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Cfjristtanus sum: Cfjrtstiant niljtl a me nlirnum puto 


A.D. 1517-1530 














A.D. 1517-1530 









(UntWBtfg of ^Wnf (gUbrcw, 


8Tf)ts Pjistarg of tf)e crman Information 





OUR LORD 1887. 


I PUBLISH the history of the Reformation in advance of 
the concluding volume on the Middle Ages, which will 
follow in due time. 

Tho Reformation was a republication of primitive Chris 
tianity, and the inauguration of modern Christianity. This 
makes it, next to the Apostolic age, the most important and 
interesting portion of church history. The Luther and 
Zwingli celebrations of 1883 and 1884 have revived its 
memories, and largely increased its literature ; while schol 
ars of the Roman Church have attempted, with great ability, 
an ultramontane reconstruction of the history of Germany 
and Europe during the period of the Reformation. The 
Cultur-Kampf is still going on. The theological battles of 
the sixteenth century are being fought over again in modern 
thought, with a slow but steady approach to a better under 
standing and final settlement. Protestantism with its free 
dom can afford to be fair and just to Romanism, which is 
chained to its traditions. The dogma of papal infallibility 
is fatal to freedom of investigation. Facts must control 
dogmas, and not dogmas facts. Truth, the whole truth, 
and nothing but the truth, is the aim of the historian ; but 
truth should be told in love (Eph. 4 : 15). 

The signs of the times point to a new era in the ever 
onward march of Christ s kingdom. God alone foreknows 
the future, and sees the end from the beginning. We poor 



mortals know only "in part," and see "in a mirror, darkly." 
But, as the plans of Providence unfold themselves, the 
prospect widens, old prejudices melt away, and hope and 
charity expand with our vision. The historian must be 
impartial, without being neutral or indifferent. He must 
follow the footsteps of Divine Providence, which shapes our 
ends, and guides all human events in the interest of truth, 
righteousness, and peace. 

I have collected much material for a comprehensive history 
of the Reformation, in the libraries of Europe, during several 
summer visits (thirteen in all), and digested it at home. I 
have studied the Luther literature in Berlin, the Zwingli 
literature in Zurich, the Calvinistic literature in Geneva 
and Paris, the English and Scotch Reformation in London, 
Oxford, and Edinburgh. Two years ago I revisited, with 
great satisfaction, the classical localities made memorable by 
the Reformation, Wittenberg, Eisleben, Eisenach, the 
Wartburg, Halle, Leipzig, Jena, Weimar, Erfurt, Gotha, 
Heidelberg, Zurich, Geneva, and found kind friends and 
Christian brethren everywhere. At Marburg, Coburg, 
Augsburg, I had been before. By way of contrast I made 
in the same year an interesting tour through Roman-Catholic 
Spain, the land of Ferdinand and Isabel, Charles V., Philip 
II., and Ignatius Loyola, and compared her former and pres 
ent state with the Protestant North. In Italy I have been 
three times, including a three-months sojourn in Rome. A 
visit to the places of events brings one nearer to the actors, 
and puts one almost into the position of a witness. 

This volume embraces, besides a general introduction to 
modern church history, the productive period of the German 
Reformation, from its beginning to the Diet of Augsburg 
(1530), and the death of Luther (1546), with a concluding 


estimate of the character and services of this extraordinary 
man. I have used the new Weimar edition of his works 
as far as published; for the other parts, Walch and the 
Erlangeii edition. Of modern Protestant historians I have 
chiefly consulted Kanke (my teacher), and Kostlin (my 
friend), with whose views on Luther and the Reformation 
I am in essential harmony. I have also constantly compared 
the learned Roman-Catholic works of Dollinger, and Janssen, 
besides numerous monographs. The reader will find classi- 
iied lists of the sources and literature in all leading 
sections (e.g., pp. 04, 99, 183, 272, 340, 399, 421, 494, 579, 
612, 629, 695, 700), and occasional excursions into the field 
of the philosophy of church history (as in the introductory 
chapter, and in 49, 56, 63, 79, 87, 99, etc.). In these I 
have endeavored to interpret the past in the light of the 
present, and to make the movements of the sixteenth 
century more intelligible through their results in the nine 
teenth. For we must judge the tree by its fruits. "God s 
mills grind slowly, but wonderfully fine." 

I am conscious of the defects of this new attempt to 
reproduce the history of the Reformation, which has so often 
been told by friend and foe, but too often in a partisan spirit. 
I have done the best I could. God expects no more from 
his servants than faithfulness in the use of their abilities and 



NEW YORK, September, 1888. 




























18. LUTHER S YOUTH AND TRAINING (with Luther s portrait) . 105 







22. LUTHER AND STAUPITZ (with portrait of Staupitz) . . 117 



25. LUTHER IN ROME (with portrait of Luther by Giorgione) . . 120 

26. THE UNIVERSITY OF WITTENBERG (with illustration) . . 132 






TO THE DIET OF WORMS (1517-1521). 



32. THE NINETY-FIVE THESES (Oct. 31, 1517) .... 155 




35. LUTHER AND CAJETAN (October, 1518) 172 

30. LUTHER AND MILTITZ (January, 1519) 175 

37. THE LEIPZIG DISPUTATION (June and July, 1519) . . 178 

38. PHILIP MELANCHTIION, LITERATURE (with portrait) . . 183 






44. THE ADDRESS TO THE GERMAN NOBILITY (July, 1520) . . 200 


TO THE POPE (October, 1520) 220 

47. THE BULL OF EXCOMMUNICATION (June 15, 1520) . . .227 

NOTES. TEXT OF THE PAPAL BULL (with fac-simile) . . . 233 


WITH ROME (Doc. 10, 1520) 247 


50. EMPEROR CHARLES V. (with portrait) 202 



53. THE DIET OF WORMS (1521) 287 





17 and 18, 1521) 300 



58. THE BAN OF THE EMPIRE (May 8 (20), 1521) . . . 318 




PEASANTS WAR (1521-1525). 


01. LUTHER ON THE WAKTBURO (April, 1521, to March, 1522) . 330 









07. LUTHER RETURNS TO WITTENBERO (March, 1522) . . . 382 



70. LUTHER AND HENUY VIII. (1522) 3!0 

71. DKSIDERIUS ERASMUS (with portrait) 300 

72. ERASMUS AND THE REFORMATION (with portrait) . . 421 

73. THE FREE-WILL CONTROVERSY (1524-1527) .... 42S 


75. THE PEASANTS WAR (1523-1525) 440 




70. THE THREE ELECTORS (with three portraits) . . . 450 
77. LUTHER S MARRIAGE (with portraits of Luther and Catharine 

von Bora) 454 










Hus, LUTHER 520 





89. LUTHER S CATECHISMS (1529) 550 




















107. THE MARBURG CONFERENCE (with facsimile of signatures) 629 


NOTE. Ox THE ORIGIN or THE SENTENCE: In necenmriis ?mitas, etc. 650 











(1527) S7 

114. A WAR PANIC (1528) 689 
















LUTHER. By Granach 107 

STAUPITZ. From a Portrait in St. Peter s Convent in Salzburg . 117 

LUTHER AT FLORENCE. By Giorgioue 131 




MELANCUTIION. By Diirer 183 

LEO X. By Raphael 220 


CHARLES V. By Beham 203 

ERASMUS. By Diirer 400 

ERASMUS. By Holbein 422 





Fcveral of the Luther picture* arc taken (by arrangement with my frlcndfl, tho author 
and puhlinhenO from the American edition of Dr. Kontlin H smaller biography of Luther 
(New York, C harliit Bcribner n HODH, 1HH3). Other* uppeur here for the flint time, and wero 
expressly prepared for thin work; an tho Florentine Luther, uud the fuc-ttiiullo of LOO B Bull 
of Excomuiuuicutioa. 






FROM A. I). i:>17 TO 1043. 



Now the Lord is the Spirit: au-l where the Spirit of the Lord in, there is liberty. 
2 COR. 3: 17. 

1 . TJie Turning Point of Modern History. 

Tin: Reformation of the sixteenth century is, next to the 
introduction of Christianity, the greatest event in history. It 
marks the end of the Middle Ages and the beginning of modern 
times. Starting from religion, it gave, directly or indirectly, a 
mighty impulse to every forward movement, and made Protest 
antism the chief propelling force in the history of modern civili 

The age of the Reformation bears a strong resemblance to the 
first century. I>oth are rich beyond any other period in great 
and good men, important facts, and permanent results. ]>oth 
contain the ripe fruits of preceding, and the fruitful germs of 
succeeding ages. They are turning points in the history of man 
kind. Th-y are felt in their cfl rcN to this day, and \vill be felt 
to the end of time. They refashioned the world from the inner 
most depths of the human soul in it.s contact with the infinite 


Being. They were ushered in by a providential concurrence of 
events and tendencies of thought. The way for Christianity was 
prepared by Moses and the Prophets, the dispersion of the Jews, 
the conquests of Alexander the Great, the language and literature 
of Greece, the arms and laws of Rome, the decay of idolatry, the 
spread of skepticism, the aspirations after a new revelation, the 
hopes of a coming Messiah. The Information was preceded and 
necessitated by the corruptions of the papacy, the decline of monas- 
ticism and scholastic theology, the growth of mysticism, the revi 
val of letters, the resurrection of the Greek and Roman classics, 
the invention of the printing press, the discovery of a new world, 
the publication of the Greek Tesiament, the general spirit of 
enquiry, the striving after national independence and personal 
freedom. In both centuries we hear the creative voice of the 
Almighty calling light out of darkness. 

The sixteenth century is the age of the renaissance in religion, 
literature, and art. The air was stirred by the spirit of progress 
and freedom. The snows of a long winter were fast melting be 
fore the rays of the vernal sun. The world seemed to be renew 
ing its youth ; old things were passing away, all things were be 
coming new. Pessimists and timid conservatives took alarm at 
the threatened overthrow of cherished notions and institutions, 
and were complaining, fault-finding and desponding. A very 
useless business. Intelligent observers of the signs of the times 
looked hopefully and cheerfully to the future. " O century ! " ex 
claimed Ulrich von Hutten, "the studies flourish, the spirits are 
awake, it is a luxury to live." And Luther wrote in lf>22: "If 
you read all the annals of the past, you will find no century like 
this since the birth of Christ. Such building and planting, such 
good living and dressing, such enterprise in commerce, such a 
stir in all the arts, has not been since Christ came into the world. 
And how numerous are the sharp and intelligent people who 
leave nothing hidden and unturned : even a boy of twenty years 
knows more nowadays than was known formerly by twenty doc 
tors of divinity." 


The same may be said with even greater force of the nineteenth 
century, which is eminently an age of discovery and invention, 
of emjuirv and progress. And both then as now the enthusiasm 
for li^ht and liberty takes two opposite directions, either towards 
skepticism and infidelity, or towards a revival of true religion 
from its primitive sources. But Christianity triumphed then, 
and will again regenerate the world. 

The Protestant Reformation assumed the helm of the liberal 
tendencies and movements of the renaissance, directed them into 
the channel of Christian life, and saved the world from a disas 
trous revolution. For the Reformation was neither a revolution 
nor a restoration, though including elements of both. It was 
negative and destructive towards error, positive and constructive 
towards truth ; it was conservative as well as progressive ; it built 
up new institutions in the place of those which it pulled down ; 
and lor this reason and to this extent it has succeeded. 

Under the motherly care of the Latin Church, Europe had 
IK-CII Christianized and civilized, and united into a familv of na 
tions under the spiritual government of the Pope and the secular 
government of the Emperor, with one creed, one ritual, one dis 
cipline, and one sacred language. The state of heathenism and 
barbarism at the beginning of the sixth centurv contrasts with 
the state of Christian Europe at the beginning of the sixteenth 
centurv as midnight darkness compared with the dawn of the 
morning. But the sun of the dav had not yet arisen. 

All honor to the Catholic Church and her inestimable services 
to humanity. But Christianity is far broader and deeper than 
any ecclesiastical organization. It burst the shell of medireval 
forms, struck out new paths, and elevated Europe to a higher 
plain 1 of intellectual, moral and spiritual culture than it had 
ever attained before. 

2. Protestantism, nnd 

Protestantism represent* the mo-t enlightened and active part 
of modern church hi>tory, but not the whole of it. 


Since the sixteenth century Western Christendom is divided 
and runs in two distinct channels. The separation may be com 
pared to the Eastern schism of the ninth century, which is not 
healed to this day ; both parties being as firm and unyielding as 
ever on the doctrinal question of the F dioquc, and the more im 
portant practical question of Popery. But Protestantism di tiers 
much more widely from the Roman church than the Roman 
church differs from the Greek, and the Protestant schism has be 
come the fruitful mother of minor divisions, which exist in sepa 
rate ecclesiastical organizations. 

We must distinguish between Catholicism and Romanism. 
The former embraces the ancient Oriental church, the mediaeval 
church, and we may say, in a wider sense, all the modern evan 
gelical churches. Romanism is the Latin church turned against 
the Reformation, consolidated by the Council of Trent and com 
pleted by the Vatican Council of 1870 with its dogma of papal 
absolutism and papal infallibility. Mediaeval Catholicism is pre- 
evangelical, looking to the Reformation ; modern Romanism is 
anti-evangelical, condemning the Reformation, yet holding with 
unyielding tenacity the oecumenical doctrines once sanctioned, 
and doing this all the more by virtue of its claim to infalli 

The distinction between pre-Re formation Catholicism and 
post-Reformation Romanism, in their attitude towards Protest 
antism, has its historical antecedent and parallel in the distinction 
between pre-Christian Israel which prepared the wav for Chris 
tianity, and post-Christian Judaism which opposed it as an 

Catholicism and Protestantism represent two distinct types of 
Christianity which sprang from the same root, but differ in the 

Catholicism is legal Christianity which served to the barbarian 
nations of thoAIiddle -Ages as a necessary school of discipline; 
Protestantism^^ evangelical Christianity which answers the age 
of independent manhood. Catholicism is traditional, hierarchi- 

cal, ritualistic, conservative; Protestantism is biblical, democratic, 
spiritual, progressive. The former is ruled by the principle of 
authoritv, the latter by the principle of freedom. Hut the law, 
bv awakening a >ense of -in and exciting- ade.-ire i or redemption, 
leads t<> the go.- pel ; parental authority is a school of l iv< doin ; 
filial obedience looks to manly pelf-government. 

The characteristic feature.- of mediaeval Catholicism are inten 
sified I y Romanism, yet without destroying the underlying 

Komani-m and orthodox Protestantism believe in one (iod, 
Father. Son, and Holy Spirit, and in one divine-human Lord 
and Saviour of the race. They accept in common the Holy 
Scriptures and the o cumenical faith. They agree in every article 
of the Apostles ( reed. What unites them is iiir deeper, Wronger 
and more important than what divides them. 

Hut Ilomani-m hold- also a large number of "traditions of the 
elders," which Protestantism rejects as extra-scriptural or anti- 
scriptural; such are the papacv, the worship of saints and relics, 
transubstantiation, the sacrifice of th(* mass, prayers and mas-cs 
for the dead, works of supererogation, pr.rgatorv, indulgences, the 
svstem of monasticism with its perpetual vows and ascetic prac 
tice-.-, Ix-sides mauv snj>crstitioits rites and ceremonies. 

Protestantism, on the other hand, revived and develojxxl the Au- 
gustinian doctrines of sin and -jraee; it proclaimed the sovereignty 

ture- a- a rule of faith, and the -ufliciency of Christ s merit a- a 
-oinve of justification ; it assorted the right of direct acc< -.- to the 
Word of (iod and the throne of grace, without human mediators; 
it secured Christian freedom from bondage; it substituted -ocial 
morality for monkish asceticism, and a simple, spiritual wor-hip 
for an impo-ing ceremonialism that addresses the senses and ima 
gination rather than the intellect and the heart. 

The difference between the Catholic and Protestant churches 
wn< typically foreshadowed bv the difference between .Jewi-h and 
Gentile Christianity in the apostolic age, which anticipated, a- it 


were, the whole future course of church history. The question 
of circumcisioD or the keeping of the Mosaic law, as a condition 
of church membership, threatened a split at the Council of Jeru 
salem, but was solved by the wisdom and charity of the apostles, 
who agreed that Jews and Gentiles alike are "saved through the 
grace of the Lord Jesus" (Acts 15: 11). Yet even after the 
settlement of the controversy by the Jerusalem compromise Paul 
got into a sharp conflict with Peter at Antioch on the same ques 
tion, and protested against his older colleague for denying by his 
timid conduct his better conviction, and disowning the Gentile 
brethren. It is not accidental that the Roman Church professes to 
be built on Peter and regards him as the first pope ; while the 
Reformers appealed chiefly to Paul and found in his epistles to 
the Galatians and Romans the bulwark of their anthropology 
and soteriology, and their doctrine of Christian freedom. The 
collision between Paul and Peter was only temporary ; and so 
the war between Protestantism and Romanism will ultimately 
pass away in God s own good time. 

The Reformation began simultaneously in Germany and Swit 
zerland, and swept with astonishing rapidity over France, Hol 
land, Scandinavia, Bohemia, Hungary, England and Scotland; 
since the seventeenth century it has spread by emigration to North 
America, and by commercial and missionary enterprises to every 
Dutch and English colony, and every heathen land. It carried 
away the majority of the Teutonic and a part of the Latin na 
tions, and for a while threatened to overthrow the papal 

But towards the close of the sixteenth century the triumphant 
march of the Reformation was suddenly arrested. Romanism 
rose like a wounded giant, and made the most vigorous efforts to 
reconquer the lost territory in Europe, and to extend its dominion 
in Asia and South America. Since that time the numerical re 
lation of the two churches has undergone little change. But the 
progress of secular and ecclesiastical history has run chiefly in 
Protestant channels. 


In inanv respects the Roman Church of to-day is a great im 
provement upon the Mediaeval Church. She has been much 
benefited by the Protestant Reformation, and is far le.-s corrupt 
and far more prosperous in Protestant than in Papal countries. 
She was driven to a counter-reform which aboli>hed some of the 
most crying abuses and infused new life and zeal into her clergy 
and laity. No papal schism lias disgraced her hi.-tory .-ince the 
sixteenth century. No pope of the character of Alexander VI. 
or even Leo X. could be elected any more. She lives chit-fly of 
the past, but uses for her defence all the weapons of modern war 
fare. She has a much larger membership than either the Greek 
or the Protestant communion; she still holds under her sway the 
Latin races of both hemispheres; she satisfies the religious wants 
of millions of human beings in all countries and climes; >he ex 
tends her educational, benevolent and missionary operations all 
over the globe; she advances in proportion as Protestantism de 
generates and neglects its duty ; and by her venerable antiquity, 
historical continuity, vi.-ible unitv, centralized organization, im 
posing ritual, sacred art, and ascetic piety she attracts intelligent 
and cultured mind.-; while the common people are kept in igno 
rance and in superstitious awe of her mysterious authority with its 
claim to open the gates of heaven and hell and to shorten the 
purgatorial sufferings of the departed. For good and evil she is 
the strongest conservative force in modern society, and there is 
every reason to believe that she will last to the end of time. 

Thus the two branches of Western Christendom seem to hold 
each other in check, and ought to stimulate each other to a noble 
rivalry in good works. 

The unhappy divisions of Christendom, while they are the 
source of many evils, have also the good effect of multiplying the 
agencies for tin; conversion of the world and facilitating the free 
growth of every phase of religious life. The evil lies not so 
much in the multiplicity of denominations, which have a mission 
to fulfil, as in the spirit of sectarianism and ezclusivism, which 
denies the rights and virtues of others. The Reformation of the 


sixteenth century is not a finale, but a movement still in progress. 
We may look hopefully forward to a higher, deeper and broader 
Reformation, when God in His overriding wisdom and mercy, by 
a pentecostal effusion of His Holy Spirit upon all the churches, 
will reunite what the sin and folly of men have divided. There 
must and will be, in the fullest sense of Christ s prophecy, "one 
flock, one Shepherd" (John 10: 16). 1 

3. Necessity of a Reformation. 

The corruption and abuses of the Latin church had long been 
the complaint of the best men, and even of general councils. A 
reformation of the head and the members was the watchword at 
Pisa, Constance, and Basel, but remained a plum dctsiderium for 
a whole century. 

Let us briefly review the dark side in the condition of the 
church at the beginning of the sixteenth century. 

The papacy was secularized, and changed into a selfish tyranny 
whose yoke became more and more unbearable. The scandal of 
the papal schism had indeed been removed, but papal morals, 
after a temporary improvement, became worse than ever during 
the years 141)2 to 1521. Alexander VI. was a monster of ini 
quity ; Julius II. was a politician and warrior rather than a 
chief shepherd of souls; and Leo X. took far more interest in 
the revival of heathen literature and art than in religion, and is 
said to have even doubted the truth of the gospel history. 

Xo wonder that many cardinals and priests followed the scan- 

1 Wo say "one il/rk v (in a To/ /nv/), not "one fol<J" (which would require H ICL 
ai ///). The latter is a strange mistranslation which has passed from the Latin 
version (on /c) into King James s version, and has often been abused as an ar 
gument for the papacy and ecclesiastical uniformity. It is corrected in the Re 
vision. The two Hocks, Jews and Gentiles, became one flock in the one Shep 
herd (TO/////;), not by entrance into the <" /// of the Jews. There may be one 
flock in manv folds or ecclesiastical organizations. The prophecy was no doubt 
already fulfilled in the Apostolic Church (Kph. 2: 11-22), but awaits a higher 
fulfillment when "the fullness of the Gentiles shall come in, and all Israel 
shall be saved." Kom. 11 : 25, 2G. 


dalous example of the popes, and weakened tlie re.- pec t oi the laity 
for the clergy. Tin- writings of contemporary -eholars, preachers 
and satirists are lull of complaints and exposures of the ignorance, 
vulgarity and immorality of priests and monk.-. Simony and 
nepotism were shamefully practiced. Celibacy \va.- a loiil foun 
tain of nnchastitv and uncleanness. The bishoprics were monopo 
lized l>v the youngest sons of princes and nohlo \\iilmut regiird 
to qualification. Geiler of Kaisersberg, a stern preacher of moral 
reformat Strassburg (d. 1510), charges all Germuny with pro 
moting ignorant and worldly men to the chief dignities, simply 
on account of their high connections. Thomas Murner com- 
plains that the devil had introduced the nobility into the 
clergy, and monopolized for them the bishoprics. 1 Plurality 
of oflice and absence from the diocese were common. Arch 
bishop Albrecht of Mainz was at the .-a me time archbishop 
of Magdeburg and bishop of Halbcrstadt. Cardinal \Yolsey 
wa.s archbishop of York while chancellor of Midland, received 
stipends from the kings of France and Spain and the doge of 
Venice, and had a train of five hundred servants. .lames V. 
of Scotland (15281042) provided for his illegitimate children 
by making them abbots of Ilolyrood House, Kel-o, Melrose, 
Coldingham and St. Andrew s, and intrusted royal favorites 
with bishoprics. 

])i.-riplinc was nearly ruined. Whole monastic establishments 
and orders had become nurseries of ignorance and .-uper.-tition, 
idleness and dissipation, and were (ho object- of contempt and 
ridicule, MS may be -een from the controversv of Kenchlin with 
the Dominican-, the writings of Erasmus, and the Kjiintohc Viro- 
nun OfjHcurorum. 

Theology was a maze of scholastic subtleties, Ari-totelian dia- 

1 In his Narrcnhftrhu-orung (l- r )12): 

"A r vit <l, r T -uffl hit 
J>>n A liJ brnrhl in Kirchrnxtal, 
Si it jii tn !;>-in Hitchof m> Itr trill hnn 
2 Jr sci dtnn <j<mz tin Edelinunn t " t t< . 


lectics and idle speculations, but ignored the great doctrines of the 
gospel. Carlstadt, the older colleague of Luther, confessed that 
he had been doctor of divinity before he had seen a complete copy 
of the Bible. Education was confined to priests and nobles. 
The mass of the laity could neither read nor write, and had no 
access to the word of God except the Scripture lessons from the 

The priest s chief duty was to perform, by his magic words, 
the miracle of transubstantiation, and to offer the sacrifice of the 
mass for the living and the dead in a foreign tongue. Many did 
it mechanically, or with a skeptical reservation, especially in 
Italy. Preaching was neglected, and had reference, mostly, to 
indulgences, alms, pilgrimages and processions. The churches 
were overloaded with good and bad picture*, with real and ficti 
tious relics. Saint-worship and image- worship, superstitious rites 
and ceremonies obstructed the direct w r orship of God in spirit and 
in truth. 

Piety which should proceed from a living union of the soul 
with Christ and a consecration of character, was turned outward 
and reduced to a round of mechanical performances such as the 
recital of Paternosters and Avemarias, fasting, alms-giving, con*- 
fession to the priest, and pilgrimage to a holy shrine. Good 
works were measured by the quantity rather than the quality, and 
vitiated by the principle of meritoriousness which appealed to the 
selfish motive of reward. Remission of sin could be bought with 
money ; a shameful traffic in indulgences was carried on under 
the Pope s sanction for filthy lucre as well as for the building of 
St. Peter s Dome, and caused that outburst of moral indignation 
which was the beginning of the Reformation and of the fearful 
judgment on the Church of Rome. 

This is a one-sided, but not an exaggerated description. It is 
true as far as it goes, and needs only to be supplemented by the 
bright side which we shall present in the next section. 

Honest Roman Catholic scholars, while maintaining the infal 
libility and consequent doctrinal irreformability of their church, 


admit in strong terms the decay of discipline and the necessity 
of a moral reform in the sixteenth century. 1 

The best proof is furnished by a pope of exceptional integrity, 
Adrian VI., who made an extraordinary confession of the papal 
and clerical corruption to the Diet of Nurnberg in 15^:2, and 
tried earnestly, though in vain, to reform his court. The Coun 
cil of Trent was called not only for the extirpation of heresy, but 
in part also "for the reformation of the clergy and Christian 
people;"- and Pope Pius IV., in the bull of confirmation, like 
wise declares that one of the objects of the Council was "the 
correction of morals and the restoration of ecclesiastical disci 
pline." 3 

On the other hand, it must be admitted that the church was 
more than once in a far worse condition, during the papal schism 
in the fourteenth, and especially iii the tenth and eleventh centu 
ries ; and yet she was reformed by Pope Hildebrand and his suc 
cessors without a split and without an alteration of the Catholic 

Why could not the same be done in the sixteenth century? 
Because the Roman church in the critical moment resisted reform 
with all her might, and forced the issue: either 110 reformation 
at all, or a reformation in opposition to Rome. 

The guilt of the western schism is divided between the two 
parties, as the guilt of the eastern schism is; although no human 

1 So Bellarmine and Bossuet. Mohler also (in his Kirchenyewh. III. 90) 
says: "We do not believe that the period before the Reformation was a flour 
ishing period of church history, for we hear from it a thousand voices for a 
reformation in the head and members (wir huren aus derselhm (Jen taitscndntim- 
mi jen Jinf nark einer Verbesserunf} an IFunpt itnd (rliedern uns entg&jentonen)." 
Even Janssen, the eulogist of media val Germany, devotes the concluding sec 
tion of the first volume of his (icschichtp. des dcntwhcn Volkes (p. 594-G13) to a 
consideration of some of the crying evils of those times. 

2 Sess. I. (held Dee. l.S, lo-io) : "ad extirpationem hfrrcpium, ad paccm et unio- 
ncm erclexiir, ad r<jnrmnli<>in*in cirri et jwpuli Christiani" See Smuts, Concilii 
Trident, ( anone* et ticreta, p. 10. 

1 "Ad plnrimoA ft pemiciosinsimas hrrrrscs extirpanda*, ail mrri /endos mores, 
et rcatUaendam ecclesiasticam ditsciplinam" etc. See Smets, /. c. 1!09. 


tribunal can measure the share of responsibility. Much is due, 
no doubt, to the violence and extravagance of the Protestant 
opposition, but still more to the intolerance and stubbornness of 
the Roman resistance. The papal court used against the Reform 
ation fora long time only the carnal weapons of political influ 
ence, diplomatic intrigue, secular wealth, haughty pride, scholastic 
philosophy, crushing authority, and bloody persecution. It 
repeated the course of the Jewish hierarchy, which crucified the 
Messiah and cast the apostles out of the synagogue. 

But we must look beyond this partial justification, and view 
the matter in the light of the results of the Reformation. 

It was evidently the design of Providence to develop a new 
tvpe of Christianity outside of the restraints of the papacy, and 
the history of three centuries is the best explanation and vindi 
cation of that design. Every movement in history must be 
judged by its fruits. 

The elements of such an advance movement were all at work 
before Luther and Zwingli protested against papal indulgences. 

4. The Preparations for the Reformation. 

C. ULLMANN: n> fnrin(iton n vor der Reformation. Hamburg, 1841, 2d ed. 1866, 
2 vols. (Kngl. trans, by K. Men/ies, Edinb. 1855, 2 vols.). C. I>E BONNE- 
CHOSE: lit y nnnnti irrx arnnt In rcfonnc du xri. mr/>. Par. 1S53, 2 vols. A 
good resume by (Ji-:o. P. FISHER: The R< form(ttion. New York, 1873, ch. 
III. 52-84; and in tbe first two lectures of CHARLES BEARD: The Hrfnnn- 
ation, London, 18S3, p. 1-75. Comp., also tbe numerous monographs of 
various scholars on the Renaissance, on Wiclif, IIus, Savonarola, Ilutten, 
Keuchlin, Krasmus, etc. A full account of tbe preparation for the Reform 
ation belongs to the last chapters of the History of Mediaeval Christianity 
(see vol. V.). We here merely recapitulate the chief points. 

Judaism before Christ was sadly degenerated, and those who 
sat in Moses seat had become blind leaders of the blind. Yet 
"salvation is of the Jews;" and out of this people arose John 
the l>nptist, the Virgin Mary, the Messiah, and the Apostles. 
Jerusalem, which stoned the prophets and crucified the Lord, wit 
nessed also the pentecostal miracle and became the mother church 
of Christendom. So the Catholic church in the sixteenth century, 


though corrupt in its head and its members, was still the church 
of the living God and gave birth to the Reformation, which 
removed the rubbish of human traditions and reopened the pure 
fountain of the gospel of Christ. 

The Reformers, it should not l>e forgotten, were all l>orn, bap 
tized, confirmed, and educated in the Roman Catholic Church, 
and mo.-t of them had served as priests at her altars with the 
solemn vow of obedience to the pope on their conscience. They 
stood as closely related to the papal church, as the Apostles and 
Evangelists to the Synagogue and the Temple ; and for reasons 
of similar urgency, thev were justified to leave the communion 
of their fathers; or rather, thev did not leave it, but were cast 
out by the ruling hierarchy. 

The Reformation \vent back to first principles in order 
to go forward. It struck its roots deep in the past and bore 
rich fruits for the future. It sprang forth almost simultaneously 
from different parts of Europe and was enthusiastically hailed 
by the leading minds of the age in church and state. No great 
movement in history except Christianity itself was so widely 
and thoroughly prepared as the Protestant Reformation. 

The reformatory councils of Pisa, Constance, and Basel ; the 
conflict of the Emperors with the Popes; the contemplative piety 
of the mystic- with their thirst after direct communion with God; 
the revival of classical literature; the general intellectual awaken 
ing; the biblical studies of Reuehlin, and Erasmus; the rising 
spirit of national independence; Wiclif, and the Lollards in 
England; Hus, and the Hussites in Bohemia; John von Goch, 
John von \Vesel, and Johann Wessel in Germany and the Nether 
lands; Savonarola in Italy; the Brethren of the Common Life, 
the Waldenses, the Ericnds of God, contributed their share 
towards the great change and paved the way for a new era of 
Christianity. The innermost life of the church was pressing 
forward to a now era. There is scarcely a principle or doctrine 
of the Reformation which was not anticipated and advocated in 
the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. Luther made the remark, 


that his opponents might charge him with having borrowed 
everything from John Wessel if he had known his writings 
earlier. The fuel was abundant all over Europe, but it required 
the spark which would set it ablaze. 

Violent passions, political intrigues, the ambition and avarice 
of princes, and all sorts of selfish and worldly motives were mixed 
up with the war against the papacy. But they were at work 
likewise in the introduction of Christianity among the heathen 
barbarians. "Wherever God builds a church, the devil builds 
a chapel close by." Human nature is terribly corrupt and leaves 
its stains on the noblest movements in history. 

But, after all, the religious leaders of the Reformation, while 
not free from faults, were men of the purest motives and high 
est aims, and there is no nation which has not been benefited by 
the change they introduced. 

5. TJiC Genius and Aim of the Reformation. 

Is. Aurt. DORXER: On the formal, and the material Principle of tftc Reformation. 
Two essays, first published in 1841 and 1857, and reprinted in his Gcsam- 
melte Sc fir if ten, Berlin, 1888, p. 48-187. Also his History of Proliant 
Theology, Engl. trans. 1871, 2 vols. 

PHIL. SCIIAFF: The Principle of Protestantism, Chambersburg, Penn., 1845 
(German and English); Protestantism and Romanism, and the Principles of 
the Reformation, two essays in his "Christ and Christianity," N. York, 
1885. p. 124-134. Also Creeds of Christendom, Vol. I. 20.3-219. 

DAN. SCHENKEL : Das Princip dea Protestantisms. Schaff hausen, 1S52 (92 
p;igcs). This is the concluding section of his larger work, Das }\ r e-scn dcs 
Protcstantismus, in 3 vols. 

K. F. A. KAIINIS: Ucber die Principien des Protestant ismns. Leipzig, 1865. 
Also his Zeugniss von den Grundwahrficitcn des Protc^tantixmus gcgen Dr. 
Hengttenbcrg. Leipzig, 18G2. 

CHARLES BEARD: The. Reformation of the Sixteenth Century in its relation to 

Modern Thought and Knowledge. Hibbert Lectures tor 18X3. London, 1883. 

A tTnitarian view, written with ample learning and in excellent spirit. 
HENRY WACE and C. A. BUCHHEIM : First Principles of the Reformation, or 

the 95 Theses and three Primary Works of Dr. M. LntJtcr. London, 1885. 
The literature on the difference between Lutheran and Reformed or 

Calvinistio Protestantism is given in SCIIAFF S Creeds of Christendom, J. 




The spirit and aim of evangelical Protestantism is best expressed 
by Paul in his anti-Judaistic Kpistle to the Gulatians: " For free 
dom did Christ set us five; stand fa>t, therefore, and be not 
entangled again in a yoke of bondage." Christian freedom is so 
inotimahlc a blessing that no amount of abuse can justify a 
relapse into a state of spiritual despotism and slavery. LUit only 
those who have enjoyed it, can properly appreciate it. 

The Reformation was at first a purely religious movement, and 
furnishes a striking illustration of the all-pervading power of 
religion in history. It started from the question : What must a 
man do to be saved? How shall a sinner be justified before God, 
and attain peace of his troubled conscience? The Reformers 
were supremely concerned for the salvation of the soul, for the 
glorv of ChrUt and the triumph of his gospel. Thev thought 
much more of the future world than of the present, and made all 
political, national, and literary interests subordinate and subserv 
ient to religion. 1 

Yet they were not monks, but live men in a live age, not pes- 
simists, but optimists, men of action as well as of thought, earnest, 
vigorous, hopeful men, free from selfish motives and aims, full of 
faith and the Holy Ghost, equal to any M!IO had preceded them 
since the days of the Apostles. From the centre of religion they 
have influenced every department of human life and activitv, and 
given a powerful impulse to political and civil liberty, to progress 
in theology, philosophy, science, and literature. 

The Reformation removed the obstructions which the papal 
church had interposed l>ctween Christ and the believer. It opened 

1 What Dr. Baur, the critical Tubingen historian, says of Luther, is equally 
applicable to all the other Reformers: J)a*.i fur Luihrr <lii Reformation tur 
eiycnsten Xarhr xrin-n Ilirzrn* f/nrunlcn tmr, <lnx# cr xir in iV/vw vH.*7< .H religiosen 
Intfrewt nuffni<xt?, ifftrt-nnt run nllm ihrfrcmdartiyen bin* (imtm-rlirfn-n Motiren, dn.ts 
ihm ntn* arvlfre* z thnn vfir, /.< um < / . titrhr <Ic.i Era.nfjrliu.rM t/n</ wincr 
seligmachrntlfn Kraft, wiccr p\ nn xirh W/wf /n nr!n?m intiern Kmupf inn die ftf\ri$- 
hfit ilfr Siiiulmrtryebttng trfahrcn fiattf, <li< i ^y i#t a>, no* ihn znin Refonnalor mnrhtf." 
Gcj tfi. der ( hrintl. A*(Vr/ir, vol. IV. "> (exl. hv his son, ISO. i). Fronde snvs of 
Luther: "II- revived and maintained the spirit of piety and reverence in 
which, uiui by \vhich alune, real progress L? posfsible." Luther t 1 relace, p. vi. 


the door to direct union with him, as the only Mediator between 
God and man, and made his gospel accessible to every reader 
without the permission of a priest. It was a return to first prin 
ciples, and for this very reason also a great advance. It was a 
revival of primitive Christianity, and at the same time a deeper 
apprehension and application of it than had been known before. 

There are three fundamental principles of the Reformation : 
the supremacy of the Scriptures over tradition, the supremacy of 
faith over works, and the supremacy of the Christian people over 
an exclusive priesthood. The first may be called the objective, 
the second the subjective, the third the social or ecclesiastical 
principle. 1 

They resolve themselves into the one principle of evangelical 
freedom, or freedom in Christ. The ultimate aim of evangelical 
Protestantism is to bring every man into living union with Christ 
as the only and all-sufficient Lord and Saviour from sin and 

6. T/te Authority of the Scriptures. 

The objective principle of Protestantism maintains that the 
Bible, as the inspired record of revelation, is the only infallible 
rule of faith and practice; in opposition to the Roman Catholic 
coordination of Scripture and ecclesiastical fradition, as the joint 
rules of faith. 

The teaching of the living church is by no means rejected, but 

1 German writers distinguish usually two principles of the Reformation, the 
authority of the Scriptures, and justification by faith, and call the first the 
format principle (or Erkenntnissprincip, principium coynnsccndi), the second the 
material principle (principium csscndi); the third they omit, except Kahnis, 
who finds a third principle in the idea of the invisible church, and calls this 
the Kirchcnprincip. The Lutheran Church gives to the doctrine of justification 
by faith the first place; and the Formula of Concord calls it "artifitlux prcc- 
cipnus in Iota doctrina Christiana." But the Reformed confessions give the first 
plare to the doctrine of the normative authority of Scripture, from which alone 
all articles of faith are to he derived, and they substitute for the doctrine of 
justification by faith the ulterior and wider doctrine of election and salvation 
by frf grace through faith. The difference is characteristic, but does not 
affect the essential agreement. 


subordinated to the Word of Go<l; while tlie opposite theory 
virtually subordinates the Bible to tradition by making the latter 
the sole interpreter of the former and confining interpretation 
within the limits of an imaginary consensus pa(rum. In the appli 
cation of the Bible principle there was considerable difl erence 
between the more; conservative Lutheran and Anglican Reforma 
tion, and the more radical Xwinglian and Calvinistic Reformation ; 
the former contained many post-scriptural and extra-scriptural 
traditions, usages and institutions, which the latter, in its zeal for 
primitive purity and simplicity, rejected as useless or dangerous; 
but all Reformers opposed what they regarded as anti-scriptural 
doctrines; and all agreed in the principle that the church has 
no right to impose upon the conscience articles of faith without 
clear warrant in the Word of (iod. 

Every true progress in church history is conditioned by a new 
and deeper study of the Scriptures, which lias "first, second, 
third, infinite draughts." While the Humanists went back to 
the ancient classics and revived the spirit of Greek and Roman 
paganism, the Reformer* went back to the sacred Scriptures in 
the original languages and revived the spirit of apostolic Christi 
anity. They were fired by an enthusiasm for the gospel, such 
as had never b -en known hinec the days of Paul. Christ ro<e 
from the tomb of human traditions and preached again his words 
of life and power. The Bible, heretofore a book of priests only, 
was now translated anew and better than ever into the vernacu 
lar tongues of Europe, and made a book of the people. Every 
C hri-tian man could henceforth go to the fountain-head of 
inspiration, and sit at the feet of ihe Divine Teacher, without 
priestly permission and intervention. This achievement of the 
Reformation was a source of incalculable blessings for all time 
to come. In a few years Luther s version had more readers 
amon the laitv than ever the Latin Vnlurate had amon <r 


priests; and the Protestant Bible societies circulate more Bibles 
in one year than were copied during the fifteen centuries before 
the Reformation. 


We must remember, however, that this wonderful progress 
was only made possible by the previous invention of the art of 
printing and by the subsequent education of the people. The 
Catholic Church had preserved the sacred Scriptures through 
ages of ignorance and barbarism ; the Latin Bible was the first 
gift of the printing press to the world; fourteen or more editions 
of a German version were printed before 1518; the first two 
editions of the Greek Testament we owe to the liberality of a 
Spanish cardinal (Ximenes), and the enterprise of a Dutch scholar 
in Basel (Erasmus) ; and the latter furnished the text from, which, 
with the aid of Jerome s Vulgate, the translations of Luther and 
Tyndale were made. 

The Roman church, while recognizing the divine inspiration 
and authority of the Bible, prefers to control the laity by the 
teaching priesthood, and allows the reading of the Scriptures in the 
popular tongues only under certain restrictions and precautions, 
from fear of abuse and profanation. Pope Innocent III. was 
of the opinion that the Scriptures were too deep for the common 
people, as they surpassed even the understanding of the wise and 
learned. Several synods in Gaul, during the thirteenth century, 
prohibited the reading of the Romanic translation, and ordered 
the copies to be burnt. Archbishop Berthold, of Mainz, in an 
edict of January 4th, 148G, threatened witli excommunication 
all who ventured to translate and to circulate translations of 
sacred books, especially the Bible, without his permission. The 
Council of Constance (1415), which burnt John Has and Jerome 
of Prague, condemned also the writings and the bones of Wiclif, 
the first translator of the whole Bible into the English tongue, 
to the flames : and Arundel, archbishop of Canterbury and chan 
cellor of England, denounced him as that "pestilent wretch of 
damnable heresy who, as a complement of his wickedness, in 
vented a new translation of the Scriptures into his mother tongue." 
Pope Pius IV. (1564), in the conviction that the indiscrimi 
nate reading of Bible versions did more harm than good (phis 
detrimenti quam utilitiatiti), would not allow laymen to read the 


sacral hook except bv special permission of* a bishop or an 
inquisitor. Clement VII I. (159S) reserved the right to grant 
this permission to the Congregation of the Index. Gregory XV. 
(KJ J J), and Clement XI. (in the Hull [ niycmtux, 171.">), 
repeated the conditional prohibition. Benedict XI V., one of the 
liberal popes, extended the permission to read the Word of God 
in the vernacular to all the faithful, yet with the proviso that the 
translation he approved in Rome and guarded by explanatory 
notes from the writings of the fathers and Catholic scholars 
(1707). This excludes, of course, all Protestant versions, even 
the very best. They are regarded as corrupt and heretical and 
have often been committed to the flames in Roman Catholic 
countries, especially in connection with the counter-Reformat ion 
of the Jesuits in Hohemia and elsewhere. The first edition of 
Tyndale s New Testament had to be smuggled into England and 
was publicly burnt by order of Tunstall, bishop of London, in 
St. Paul s church-yard near the spot from which Bibles are now 
sent to all parts of the globe. The Bible societies have been 
denounced and condemned bv modern popes as a pestilence 
which perverts the gospel of Christ into a gospel of the devil." 
The Papal Syllabus of Pius IX. (1*6-1), classes "Societal 
Biblicce" with Socialism, Communism, and Secret Societies, calls 
them " pests frequently rebuked in the severest terms," and refers 
for proof, to several Encyclicals from November l)th, 1S1U, to 
August 10th, ISO:*. 1 

Such fulminations against Protestant Bible societies mi^ht be 
in some measure excused if the popes favored Catholic Bible 
societies, which would be the best proof of zeal for the spread of 

! Sehafi; Cmhnffhn.tlrn.rnm, II.2H; Kolln, r, S;,,n W/7: II. :I, S T |. ; Hasp, 
Unnilhitch (!> l l rti:<tfint. I iil--tii lc, fourth el., 1S7S, p. OS s<j<|. Tin-re \\vre indeed 
vernacular translations of the P.iMe long before the Keformation ; Init it is :i 
most astounding exaggeration when IVrnme, as (juoted \>y Hase, asserts I / /(.-- 
lect. Throl. III. g :U7): " / .r J//.-HI tcmpus S<0 ^/x.-i WH HMJJ cilitwnc* liililionnn nnt 
N. T. ante Refnrmniionfm prodiiv<tnt, ric p<-r uniivraam Kuropam rdlltulirnin rir- 
CWnffrchantur, (int rjnmn r7 pmtfutnntit nomt n ni/nnsrcn tnr. Kt ci fti.* J(l(( rT- 
fiuns* inlingui* vtrnaculij divcraarum ycntium omnium manibtu libcre vtrtabantur." 


the Scriptures. But sueh institutions do not exist. Fortunately 
papal hulls have little effect in modern times, and in spite of 
official prohibitions and discouragements, there are zealous advo 
cates of Bible reading among modern Catholics, as there were 
among the Greek and Latin fathers. l Nor have the restrictions 
of the Council of Trent been able to prevent the progress of 
Biblical scholarship and exegesis even in the Roman church. 
E pnr si muove. The Bible, as well as the earth, moves for 
all that. 

Modern Protestant theoloffv is much more just to ecclesiastical 

cv J 

tradition than the Reformers could be in their hot indignation 
against the prevailing corruptions and against the papal tyranny 
of their day. The deeper study of ecclesiastical and secular 
history has dispelled the former ignorance on the "dark ages," 
so called, and brought out the merits of the fathers, missionaries, 
schoolmen, and popes, in the progress of Christian civilization. 

But these results do not diminish the supreme value of the 
sacred Scripture as an ultimate tribunal of appeal in matters of 
faith, nor the importance of its widest circulation. It is by far 
the best guide of instruction in holy living and dying. Xo mat 
ter what theory of the mode and extent of inspiration we may 
hold, the fact of inspiration is plain and attested by the universal 
consent of Christendom. The Bible is a book of holy men, but 
just as much a book of God, who made those men witnesses of 
truth and sure teachers of the way of salvation. 

7. Justification by Faith. 

The subjective principle of Protestantism is the doctrine of 
justification and salvation by faith in Christ; as distinct from 
the doctrine of justification by faith and works or salvation 
by grace and Jnnnfni merit. Luther s formula is aold fulc. 
Calvin goes further back to God s eternal election, as the ultimate 

1 See L. Van Kss, AiinrMfjc. iihcr das nothwendige und niitzlichc Bibellcsen aits den 
Kirchcnvatcrn >/n<l mxl, rnt kathnl. Schriften, second ed., 1810; also the preface 
to his translation of the New Testament. 


ground of salvation and comfort in life and in death. But Luther 
and Calvin infant substantially the same tiling, and agree in the 
more general proposition of salvation by free yracc through Ih-iny 
J<tit/t in Christ (Acts 4 : 1 J), in opposition to any Pelagian or 
Semi{>elagian compromise which divides the work and merit 
Ix twcen Clod and man. And this is the verv toiil of evangelical 
Protestantism. 1 

Lut her assigned to his s< ilifidian doctrine of justification tlie cen 
tral po-ition in the Christian .-vstem, declared it to he the article 
of the standing or falling ( Lutheran) church, and was unwilling to 
yield an inch from it, though heaven and earth should collapse. 2 
This exaggeration is due to his personal experience during his 
convent Hie. The central article of the Christian faith on which 
the church is built, is not anv specific dogma of the Protestant, 
or Uoman, or (ireek church, hut the broader and deeper truth 
held hv all, namelv, the divine-human personality and atoning 
work of Christ, the Lord and Saviour. This was the confession 
of Peter, the fir-t creed of Christendom. 

Tin- Protestant doctrine of justification di Hers from the Roman 
Catholic, as defined (verv circumspectly) by the Council of Trent, 
chieflv in two point-. Justification is conceived as a declaratory 
and judicial act of (lod, in distinction from sauctification, which 
i- a gradual growth ; and faith is conceived as a fiducial act of 
the heart and will, in distinction from theoretical belief and blind 

Only intliHsen-e can it l<e called Aujrustinian : for otherwise AiiuuMin s 
conception <){jt<.*tii!rnti<> \* catholic, and lie identities it with 8<inctilicaliu. More- 
ovi -r lie widely dillers from tin- I roteMant conception of the chinch and its 
authority. Luther elt th- difference in his latrr vears. 

.l/-rVi/i .Sj,;/vi///iW, p. :;<i:,(,-,l. Ki .-h, nl.,or :;i<i,.,l. Mtiller): " I),-hr,ii-n,-ulo 
[no/urn IK/I III ni>.* jnttitlc iri J c/i /v />/ ali<int<l contra ilium inn/iri <titt in ninth ,> n> in<> 
jtinrum fHili-d rtumwi wliitn ?t t?rrn rl oinniu cumuint. (Afts-1: 1 J ; 1-a. > . < : . >). 
J .t in /in- iirlii iil t ,"if<i tnitt >( ruit.- ixtiint oinnin, <JHT rnn rn j>itjnnii t dinbnlnm ft uni- 
t T.sMi initntluni in nt i ;i<x// - <j </ /(>! //.*, ti:i(umnr > t (iffini .*. (Junrt <>i i<< ti t not de 
IKK- <l<>rtnmi <:<. nriti.-, <( tnmnii* dnlntttre^ nliatjuin wlnm cut JH-I>I-HH.<, >i jiiiji >t 
dinlioliiA >t niniii i mli-fi-mi ,>!.< ,-t riftiH-iniii rontrn un.< nbtinfnt" Luther iiiM-rted in 
his translation of ll<>rn. : -* 1 . tlie word /// i (.-"tin fi<l,-, hence tin- ti-rm slititli- 
u tu. --in ), and the revised / ,-,/ /,,// ,,f !>>: , retained it. < >n tin- exegetical (jlies- 
tii iis involved, bee iity anii itulions to Lange on Romans > : lis. 


submission to the church. The Reformers derived their idea 
from Paul, the Romanists appealed chiefly to James (2 : 17-2G); 
but Paul suggests the solution of the apparent contradiction 
by his sentence, that "in Christ Jesus neither circumcision avail- 
eth anything nor uncircumcision, but faith working through love" 

Faith, in the biblical and evangelical sense, is a vital force 
which engages all the powers of man and apprehends and appro 
priates the very life of Christ and all his benefits. It is the child 
of grace and the mother of good works. It is the pioneer of all 
great thoughts and deeds. By faith Abraham became the father 
of nations; by faith Moses became the liberator and legislator 
of Israel; by faith the Galilean fishermen became fishers of men; 
and by faith the noble army of martyrs endured tortures and 
triumphed in death ; without faith in the risen Saviour the church 
could not have been founded. Faith is a saving power. It 
unites us to Christ. Whosoever believeth in Christ " hath eternal 
life." "We believe/ said Peter at the Council of Jerusalem, 
" that we shall be saved through the grace of God," like the Gen 
tiles who come to Christ by faith without the works and cere 
monies of the law. "Believe in the Lord Jesus, and thou shalt 
be saved," was Paul s answer to the question of the jailor : 
" What must I do to be saved?" 

Protestantism does by no means despise or neglect good works 
or favor antinomian license ; it only subordinates them to faith, 
and measures their value by quality rather than quantity. They 
are not the condition, but the necessary evidence of justification ; 
they are not the root, but the fruits of the tree. The same faith 
which justifies, does also sanctify. It is ever "working through 
love" (Gal. 5 : G). Luther is often charged with indifference to 
good works, but very unjustly. His occasional unguarded utter 
ances must be understood in connection with his whole teaching 
and character. " Faith," in his own forcible language which 
expresses his true view, " faith is a living, busy, active, mighty 
thing, and it is impossible that it should not do good without 
ceasing; it does not ask whether good works are to be done, but 


before the question is put, it has done them already, and is always 
engaged in doing them; you may its well separate burning and 
shining from lire, as works from faith." 

The Lutheran doetrine of Christian freedom and justification 
bv faith alone, like that of St. Paul on which it was based, was 
made the cloak of excesses by carnal men who wickedly reasoned, 
"Let us continue in sin that grace may abound " (Rom. 6 : 1), 
and who abused their u freedom for an occasion to the flesh" 
(Gal. 5: I- )). All such consequences the apostle cut oil at the 
outset by an indignant "God forbid." 

The fact is undeniable, that the Reformation in Germany was 
accompanied and followed by antinomian tendencies and a degen 
eracy of public morals. It rests not only on the hostile testi 
monies of Romanists and separatists, but Luther and Melanchthon 
themselves often bitterly complained in their later years of the 
abuse of the liberty of the gospel and the sad state of morals in 
Wittenberg and throughout Saxony. 1 

But we should remember, first, that the degeneracy of morals, 
especially the increase of extravagance, and luxury with its attend 
ing yices, had begun in Catholic times in consequence of discover 
ies and inventions, the enlargement of commerce and wealth." 
Nor was it near as bad as the state of things which Luther had 
witnessed at Rome in 1511, under Pope Julius II., not to speak 

1 The weight <>f IV.llinjror s throe volumes on the ft- format ion (1848) consists 
in the collection of su-h unfavorable testimonies from the writings of Erasmus, 
Wi/.el, Haner, Wildenatier, Crotus Rubeauus, Biblicanus, Staupitz, Amerpach, 
I irkheimer, Zasius, Frank, Honk, Ilet/.er, Schwenkfeld, Luther, Melanchthon, 
Kpalatin, Hugenhagen, and others. They give, indeed, a verv gloomv, but a 
very one-sided picture of the times. Janssen makes good use of these testimo 
nies. I .ut both the-e ( atholic historians, whose eminent learning is undeniable, 
wrote with a polemic aim, and make the very truth lie bv omitting the bright 
side of the Reformation. Corn p. on this subject the controversial writings of 
Kiistlinand Kb rard airainst JansMMi, and Janssen s replies. An m<ine Kritikrr, 
Freiburg i. 15. 1 vs. { (/, hntes Tau-end. 2 _ 7 pages), and Kin zu-eitcs Wort an 
rtin jif A n /i /rr, Freib. ISS. J (Xwolftes Tausend, 144 pngf). 

1 Kvcn Janssen admits this, but is silent about the greater corruption in 
Rome. See hi- ^f.^hirhtr dff Dnitfchcn VMes I. 37-3 sq]. Coiuj). his Kin zucitt* 
Wurt an mcinc AVi/i7;r, j). HU. 


of the more wicked reign of Pope Alexander VI. Secondly, the 
degeneracy was not clue so much to a particular doctrine, as to 
the confusion which necessarily followed the overthrow of the 
ecclesiastical order and discipline, and to the fact that the Lutheran 
Reformers allowed the government of the church too easily to 
pass from the bishops into the hands of secular rulers. Thirdly, 
the degeneracy was only temporary during the transition from 
the abolition of the old to the establishment of the new order of 
things. Fourthly, the disorder was confined to Germany. The 
Swiss Reformers, from the start, laid greater stress on discipline 
than the Lutheran Reformers, and organized the new church on 
a more solid basis. Calvin introduced a state of moral purity 
and rigorism in Geneva such as had never been known before in 
the Christian church. The Huguenots of France, the Calvinists 
of Holland, the Puritans of England and New England, and the 
Presbyterians of Scotland are distinguished for their strict prin 
ciples and habits. An impartial comparison of Protestant coun 
tries and nations with Roman Catholic, in regard to the present 
state of public and private morals and general culture, is eminently 
favorable to the Reformation. 

8. The Priesthood of the Laity. 

The social or ecclesiastical principle of Protestantism is the 
general priesthood of believers, in distinction from the special 
priesthood which stands mediating between Christ and the 

The Roman church is an exclusive hierarchy, and assigns to 
the laity the position of passive obedience. The bishops are the 
teaching and ruling church ; they alone constitute a council or 
synod, and have the exclusive power of legislation and adminis 
tration. Laymen have no voice in spiritual matters, they can 
not even read the Bible without the permission of the priest, who 
holds the keys of heaven and hell. 

In the New Testament every believer is called a saint, a priest, 
and a king. "All Christians," says Luther, "are truly of the 


spiritual estate, and there is no diflerencc among tlieni, save of 
oHice alone. As St. Paul says, we are all one body, though eaeh 
meml>cr does its own work, to serve the others. This is because 
\\c have one baptism, one gospel, one faith, and are all Christians 
alike; lor baptism, gospel and faith, the>e alone make spiritual 
and Christian people." And again: " It i- faith that makes men 
priests, faith that unites them to Christ, and u;ives them the 
indwelling of the IIolv Spirit, \vherebv thev become filled with 
all holv grace and heavenlv power. The inward anointing this 
oil, better than anv that ever came from the horn of bishop or 
pope gives them not the name only, but the nature, the purity, 
the power of priests; and this anointing have all they received 
who are believers in ClmM." 

This principle, consistently carried out, raises the laity to active 
co-operation in the government and administration of the church ; 
it gives them a voice and vote in the election of the pa-tor; it 
makes every member of the congregation u.-cful, according to his 
peculiar gift, for the general good. This principle is the source 
of religious and civil libertv which flourishes most in Protestant 
countries. Religions libertv is the mother of civil liberty. The 
universal priesthood of Christians leads legitimately to the uni 
versal kingship of free, self-governing citizens, whether under a 
monarchy or under a republic. 

The good effect of this principle showed itself in the spread of 
IVible knowledge among the laitv, in popular hvmnodv and con 
gregational singing, in the institution of lay-elder-hip, and in 
the pious y.eal of the magistrates for moral reform and general 

lint it was al-o shamefully perverted ami abu-ed by the 
secular rulers who sei/ed the control of religion, made themselves 
bishops and popes in their dominion, robbed the churches and 
convents, and often defied all discipline bv their own immoral 
conduct. Philip of He e, and Henry VIII. of Kngland, are 
conspicuous examples of P rote-taut popes who disgraced the cause 
of the Reformation. Erastianism and Territorialism whose motto 


is: cujus rcgio, ejus religio, arc perversions rather than legitimate 
developments of lay-priesthood. The true development lies in 
the direction of general education, in congregational self-support 
and self-government, and in the intelligent co-operation of the 
laity with the ministry in all good works, at home and abroad. 
In this respect the Protestants of England, Scotland, and North 
America, are ahead of the Protestants on the Continent of Europe. 
The Roman church is a church of priests and has the grandest 
temples of worship ; the Lutheran church is a church of theologians 
and has most learning and the finest hymns; the Reformed church 
is a church of the Christian people and has the best preachers 
and congregations. 

9. The Reformation and Rationalism. 

G.FRANK: De Luthero rationalismi prcecursore. Lips., 1857. 

S. BERGKH: La Bible au scizicmc sicde ; etude sur Ics origines de la critique. 

Paris, 1879. 
CHARLES BEARD: TJie Reformation of the Sixteenth Century in relation to Modern 

Thought and Knowledge (Ilibbert Lectures). London, 1883. Lect. V. 
Comp. also LECKY : History of Rationalism in Europe. London, 4th ed. 1870, 

2 vols. GEORGE P. FISHER: Faith and Rationalism. New York, 1879, 

revised 1885 (191 pages). 

The Roman Catholic Church makes Scripture and tradition 
the supreme rule of faith, laying the chief stress on tradition, 
that is, the teaching of an infallible church headed by an infallible 
Pope, as the judge of the meaning of both. 1 

Evangelical Protestantism makes the Scripture alone the 
supreme rule, but uses tradition and reason as means in ascertain 
ing its true sense. 

Rationalism raises human reason above Scripture and tradition, 
and accepts them only as far as they come within the limits of its 
comprehension. It makes rationality or intelligibility the meas 
ure of credibility. We take the word Rationalism here in the 

"I am the tradition" (la tradizione son io), said Pope Pius IX., during the 
Vatican Council which substituted an infallible papacy for an infallible coun 
cil, in conflict both with oecumenical councils and popes who officially 
denounced Pope llonorius III. as a Monothcletio heretic. See vol. IV. 500 sqq. 


technical sense of a theological system and tendency, in distinc 
tion from rational theology. The legitimate use of reason in 
reliirion is allowed bv the Catholic and still more by the Protest- 


ant church, and both have produced scholastic systems in full 
harmony with orthodoxy. Christianity is above reason, but not 
against reason. 

Tin? Reformation is represented as the mother of Rationalism 
both by Rationalistic and by Roman Catholic historians and con- 
trover.-ialists, but from an opposite point of view, bv the former 
to the credit, by the latter to the disparagement of both. 

The Reformation, it is said, took the first step in the emanci 
pation of reason: it freed us from the tyranny of the church. 
Rationalism took the second step : it freed us from the tyranny 
of the bible. "Luther," says Lessing, the champion of criticism 
against Lutheran orthodoxy, "thou great, misjudged man! Thou 
hast redeemed us from the yoke of tradition : who will redeem us 
from the unbearable yoke of the letter! Who will at last bring 
u-^ a Christianity such as thou would teach us now, such as Christ 
himself would teach !" 

Roman Catholics go still further and hold Protestantism 
responsible for all modern revolutions and for infidelity itself, 
and predict its ultimate dismemberment and dissolution. 1 but 
tin- charge is sufficiently set a.-ide by the undeniable fact that 
modern infidelity and revolution in their worst forms have appeared 
chiefly in Roman Catholic countries, as desperate reactions against 

1 This charire U sanctioned by several papal Encyclicals; it is implied, nega 
tively, in the, of I ius IX. ( Isii 1 /, and, positively, though cautiously, 
in the Encyclical of Leo XI II Iinmrt>il? I)<i (Nov. 1, IMS. )), \\hidi charm ter- 
i/.es the Reformation movements (without naming them) as "those pernicious 
siid dcplorahlc revolutionary tendein -ies which were aroused in the sixteenth 
century, and which, after introducing confusion into Christendom, soon, by a 
natural course, entered the domain of philosophy, and from philosophy into nil 
the lines of civil society." Ilasak, in his hook 7>r. .V. Lntln-r (Keuensburg, 
13*1 ), takes :i> his motto : " I .e reconcile.] to the Church of ( Jod, the old mother 
church, which, for these eighteen hundred years, has Keen the preserver of the 
eternal truth, In-fore the t.Kx>dy flood of at In i>m and the tf-c-iulihtir republic 
breaks ujxm us a^ a true judgment of the world. 


hierarchical and political despotism. The violent suppression of 
the Reformation in France ended at last in a radical overthrow 
of the social order of the church. In Roman Catholic countries, 
like Spain and Mexico, revolution has become a chronic disease. 
Romanism provokes infidelity among cultivated minds by its 
excessive supernaturalism. 

The Reformation checked the skepticism of the renaissance, 
and the anarchical tendencies of the Peasants War in Germany 
and of the Libertines in Geneva. An intelligent faith is the best 
protection against infidelity; and a liberal government is a safe 
guard against revolution. 

The connection of the Reformation with Rationalism is a his 
torical fact, but they are related to each other as the rightful use 
of intellectual freedom to the excess and abuse of it. Rationalism 
asserts reason against revelation, and freedom against divine as 
well as human authority. It is a one-sided development of the 
negative, protesting, antipapal and antitraditional factor of the 
Reformation to the exclusion of its positive, evangelical faith in 
the revealed will and word of God. It denies the supernatural 
and miraculous. It has a superficial sense of sin and guilt, and 
is essentially Pelagian; while the Reformation took the opposite 
Augustinian ground and proceeded from the deepest conviction 
of sin and the necessity of redeeming grace. The two systems 
are thus theoretically and practically opposed to each other. And 
yet there is an intellectual and critical affinity between them, and 
Rationalism is inseparable from the history of Protestantism. It 
is in the modern era of Christianity what Gnosticism was in the 
ancient church a revolt of private judgment against the popular 
faith and church orthodoxy, an overestimate of theoretic knowl 
edge, but also a wholesome stimulus to inquiry and progress. 
It is not a church or sect (unless we choose to include Socinian- 
ism and Unitarianism), but a school in the church, or rather a 
number of schools which differ very considerably from each other. 

Rationalism appeared first in the seventeenth century in the 
Church of England, though without much eflect upon the people, 


as Dei-m, which asserted natural religion versus revealed religion ; 
it was matured in its various phases after the middle of the 
eighteenth century on the Continent, especially in Protestant 
Germany since Less ing (d. 17X1) and Sender (d. 17 ( J1), and 
gradually obtained the masterv of the chairs and pulpits of 
Lutheran and Reformed churches, till about 1817, when a revival 
of ill* 1 positive faith of the Reformation spread over Germany 
and a serious conflict bc^an between positive and negative Pro 
testantism, which continues to this day. 

1. Let ii- fust consider the relation of the Reformation to the 
use of reason as a general principle. 

The Reformation was a protest against human authority, 
asserted the ri-jht of private conscience and judgment, and roused 
a spirit of criticism and free inquiry in all departments of knowl 
edge. It allows, therefore, a much wider scope for the exercise 
of rea-oii in religion than the Roman church, which requires 
unconditional submission to her infallible authority. It marks a 
real progress, hut this progress is perfectly consistent with a belief 
in revelation on subjects which lie beyond the boundary of time 
and sense. What do we know of the creation, and the world of 
the future, except what God has chosen to reveal to us? Human 
rea-on can prove the possibility and probability of the existence 
of God and the immortality of the soul, but not the certainty and 
necessity. It is reasonable, therefore, to believe in the .super 
natural on divine testimony, and it is unreasonable to reject it. 

The Reformers used their reason and judgment very freely in 
their content with church authority. Luther refused to rex-ant in 
the crisis at Worm*, unless convinced bv testimonies of the 
Scriptures and "cogent arguments." 1 For a while lie was dis 
posed to avail himself of the humanistic movement which was 

1 " Srripturrr tnrrir tfttimoniix vr! rriilrnti ratione," or " eridcntii*imi& rationibns ; " 
in the ( iennan form, as repeated hy him on the occasion, ll durch Zcttynissc <ler 
hril. Srltrift iin<l ilurrh h> llr firiind -. S-e Ki".-tlin 1 1. 4"il! s-j. ami SOO. The 
words soem to assign t< reason an independent position In- the side of the 
Scriptures, hut in ruse of conflict Luther always allowed the decision to the 


skeptical and rationalistic in its tendency, but his strong religious 
nature always retained the mastery. He felt as keenly as any 
modern Rationalist, the conflict between natural reason and the 
transcending mysteries of revelation. He was often tormented 
by doubts and even temptations to blasphemy, especially when 
suffering from physical infirmity. A comforter of others, he 
needed comfort himself and asked the prayers of friends to fortify 
him against the assaults of the evil spirit, with whom he had, as 
he thought, many a personal encounter. He confessed, in 1524, 
how glad he would have been five years before in his war with 
papal superstition, if Carlstadt could have convinced him that the 
Eucharist was nothing but bread and wine, and how strongly he 
was then inclined to that rationalistic view which would have 
given a death blow to trausubstantiation and the mass. He felt 
that every article of his creed the trinity in unity, the incarna 
tion, the transmission of Adam s sin, the atonement by the blood 
of Christ, baptismal regeneration, the real presence, the renewal 
of the Holy Spirit, the resurrection of the body transcended 
human comprehension. In Aug. 2, 1527, during the raging of 
the pestilence at AVittenbcrg, he wrote to Melanchthou, who was 
absent at Jena : " For more than a week I have been tossed about 
in death and hell; so that, hurt in all my body, I still tremble 
in every limb. For having almost wholly lost Christ, I was 
driven about by storms and tempests of despair and blasphemy 
against God. But God, moved by the prayers of the saints, 
begins to have pity upon me, and has drawn my soul out of the 
lowest hell. Do not cease to pray for me, as I do for you. I 
believe that this agony of mine pertains to others also." J 

In such trials and temptations he clung all the more mightily 
to the Scriptures and to faith which believes against reason and 
hopes against hope. "It is a quality of faith," he says in the 
explanation of his favorite Epistle to the Galatians, " that it 

1 Brifff, ed. de Wette, III. 189 : " Ego sane . . . plus Ma hcbdomada in morte 
ct inferno jactatus, ita ut toto corpore &rm<? adhnc tremam mrmbris" etc. Comp. 
Luther s letters to Spalatin, July 10th and Aug. 19th, 1527, /. c. III. 187, 191. 


wrings the neck of reason and strangles the beast, which else the 
whole world, with all creatures, could not strangle. But how? 
It holds to God s Word, and lets it Ixi right and true, no matter how 
foolish and impossible it sounds. So did Abraham take his 
reason captive and slay it, inasmuch as he believed (toil s Word, 
wherein was promised him that from his unfruitful and as it were 
dead wife, Sarah, (iod would give him seed." 

This and many similar passages clearly show the bent of 
Luther s mind, lie knew the enemy, but overcame it; his faith 
triumphed over doubt. In his later years he became more and 
more a conservative churchman. He repudiated the mystic doc 
trine of the inner word and spirit, insisted on submission to the 
written letter of the Scriptures, even when it flatly contradicted 
reason. He traced the errors of the Zwickau prophets, the 
relx. llious pea-ants, the Anabaptists, and the radical views of 
Carlstadt and Zwingli, without proper discrimination, to presump 
tuous inroads of the human reason into the domain of faith, and 
feared from them the overthrow of religion. He so far forgot his 
obligations to Krasmus as to call him an Epicurus, a Lucian, a 
doubter, and an atheist. Much as he valued reason as a precious 
gift of (Jod in matters of this world, he abused it with unreasonable 
violence, when it dared to sit in judgment over matters of faith. 1 

1 He called reason "the mistress of the devil," "the ugly devil s bride," "a 

poi-on"iis l.e:ist with many dragons heads," "(Jod .s bitterest enemy." The 
coar.-est invective ajjuin^t this ^ilt of (Jod is found in the hist sermon lie 
preached at Wittenberg, in the year of his death (l~>-4(>), on Mom. 1U: -H. He 
here represents reason as tlie fountain of jjross and subtle idolatrv, and says: 
" Wwhcrri, ,S17 *///(/, Kltfhrnrh, Mrd, Tudturhlmj, etc., di? knnn innn ?/io f:> ti, nnd 
rcr.<lclu-t d lrti >!!> }\ , lt, <lu*.< >/> Siln le win; <it>r di:* 7V/V/x Ilrtiut, Hut in, die 
Vhniw 3f tz>,f<"i!ir>-t /j. /vi n, nnd fill klui] xein, itnd win w wt / -t, in>-in-t x/-, fx >ri dcr 
ht-ili jf (}fi*t ; iri r will da /</// n f W nb r Jurint, Mi difUJt t nf)rfi l\ i,,t i<i nd<-r A nVr. 
J) -nn f.i i*t d n- / ( />/ ( x//; Hun-dif d*r Tmfi-l hut." And a^ain: " Ihmh ilb -n vie fin 
junger (i?*ill WMX dn- b- inni Lnut I/V/I/VH, fin Alter dnn (!<-iz: (ii<> ixt die V<-rnnnft 
ton Art nnd Xdtnr cine Hchiidlif lie Ifur?." . . . " l>it. V> rnmift i*t nnd null in der 
Tmifi- friv iiift xi-in." " Jflirr (i if, du iw(1>irhtf I fun ; will*t dit ,V-V</Ti n tfin iifirr 
den (Jlmiben, \wlchfr mrjt, d uw im AbcndtnaJd <{* Herrn sei derwihrc L<-ib nnd dua 
U dfu c Hint, itr in dfixft die Taufi nl> ht nrhl^rht If axt/T it . . . l)ii.<>n\ (ilnnlx n 
die Vernnnft unifrtlian und yehuraum scin." And mucli of t lie same sort, 


Certainly, Luther must first be utterly divested of his faith, 
and the authorship of his sermons, catechisms and hymns must 
be called in question, before he can be appealed to as the father 
of Rationalism. He would have sacrificed his reason ten times 
rather than his faith. 

Zwingli was the most clear-headed and rationalizing among 
the Reformers. 1 lie did not pass through the discipline of 
monasticism and mysticism, like Luther, but through the liberal 
culture of Erasmus. lie had no mystic vein, but sound, sober, 
practical common sense. He always preferred the plainest sense 
of the Bible. He rejected the Catholic views on original sin, 
infant damnation and the corporeal presence in the cucharist, and 
held advanced opinions which shocked Luther and even Calvin. 
But he nevertheless reverently bowed before the divine authority 
of the inspired Word of God, and had no idea of setting reason 
over it. His dispute with Luther was simply a question of 
interpretation, and he had strong arguments for his exegesis, as 
even the best Lutheran commentators must confess. 

Calvin was the best theologian and exegete among the Reform 
ers. He never abused reason, like Luther, but assigned it the 
office of an indispensable handmaid of revelation. He con 
structed with his logical genius the severest system of Protestant 
orthodoxy which shaped French, Dutch, English and American 
theology, and fortified it against Rationalism as well as against 
Romanism. His orthodoxy and discipline could not keep his 
own church in Geneva from becoming Socinian in the eighteenth 
century, but he is no more responsible for that than Luther for 
the Rationalism of Germany, or Rome for the infidelity of Vol 
taire. L^pon the whole, the Reformed churches in England, 

with vehement denunciations of the Sdiwarmergeister and Sacramcntirer (the 
sectaries and Zwinglians). See Wcrkr, ed. Waleh XII. col. 1530 sqq. It is 
noteworthy that Luther first aluised reason in his hook on the Slavery of the 
Human Will against the semi-Pclagianism of Erasmus. But his assaults on 
Aristotle and the scholastic theology hegan several years earlier, hefore 1517. 

1 Luther felt this when he told him at Marburg: "You have a different 


Scotland and North America, have been far less invaded by 
Rationalism than Germany. 

J. Let us now consider the application of the principle of free 
inquirv t<> the Bible. 1 

The Bible, its origin, genuineness, integrity, aim, and all its 
circumstances and surroundings are proper subjects oi investiga 
tion ; for it is a human as well as a divine book, and has a 
history, like other literary productions. The extent of the Bible, 
moreover, or the canon, is not determined by the Bible itself or 
by inspiration, but by church authority or tradition, and was not 
fully agreed upon till the close of the fourth centnrv, and even 
then onlv bv provincial synods, not by any of the seven (ecumeni 
cal councils. It was therefore jn-tlv open to rein vestigat ion. 

The Church of Rome, at the Council oi Trent, settled the 
canon, including the Apocrvpha, but without anv critical inquiry 
or definite theological principle; it simply confirmed the tra 
ditional usage, and pronounced an anathema on everv one who 
does not receive all the books contained in the Latin Vulgate. 2 
She also checked the freedom of investigation bv requiring con 
form it v to a defective version and a unanimous consen-ii- of the 
fathers, although such an exegetical consensus does not exist 
except in certain fundamental doctrines. 

The Reformers re-opened the question of the extent of the 
canon, as thev had a right to do, but without any idea of sweep- 

1 Com p. here the Critical Introductions to the Hible, and especially Kcuss. 
IIixtrn r>- (In ( inon <l,:< Stiinh:i L rriln n:<, Straslxnir^, lSl);>. ( h. X\"l. |t. . His 
BJI|.; Hunter s Knjjl. tran-l. !*>!) p. J .0 s<pi. 

* Sos. IV. (April Sth, ]">Ji i : " Si </ "* nnlrm lihrn* ipxnx intryrn* nun mini Hum 
tui* pnrtHni*, jinmt in i-n-l,.tin nit inlirn kyi ronxnrivmnt, ft in rrti-ri \ nl</<ttn L tfinn 
editionr ft<iln-ntnr, j>rn nurri* ( ninoniri.* unit mmri-jnTit ft tratlitioiH A pnrdirttw .o-i- 
en* rt pnitlm.* rnnli-iniwrif, nnutln mn >//." Sdiafl , f ,-ri-ifa II.S J. Tlicrr \\cn-, 
however, protesting V iecs in the council: some denire<l to reoi^ni/e the 
old distinction Ketwet-n Homnlntjnmfnn ami AntUfyomrna; others simply an 
enumeration of the sacred hooks used in the Catholic church, without dog 
matic definition. Sarpi censures the council for its decision, and then- are 
Catholic divines (as Sixtus Sen-nK I >u Pin. .lahnK wh--. in spite of tlie 
decision, make a distinction In tween protocanonical and dvuterocnnonical 


ing away the traditional belief or undermining the authority of 
the Word of God. On the contrary, from the fulness of their 
faith in the inspired Word, as contained in the Scriptures, they 
questioned the canonicity of a few hooks which seem to be lack 
ing in sufficient evidence to entitle them to a place in the Bible. 
They simply revived, in a new shape and on doctrinal rather 
than historical grounds, the distinction made by the Hebrews and 
the ancient fathers between the canonical and apocryphal books 
of the Old Testament, and the Eusebian distinction between the 
Homologuinena and Aniilegoinena of the New Testament, and 
claimed in both respects the freedom of the ante-Xicene church. 

They added, moreover, to the external evidence, the more 
important internal evidence on the intrinsic excellency of the 
Scripture, as the true ground on which its authority and claim to 
obedience rests; and they established a firm criterion of canon 
icity, namely, the purity and force of teaching Christ and his 
gospel of salvation. They did not reject the testimonies of the 
fathers, but they placed over them what Paul calls the "demon 
stration of the Spirit and of power" (1 Cor. 2: 4). 

Luther was the bold pioneer of a higher criticism, which was 
indeed subjective and arbitrary, but, after all, a criticism of faith. 
He made his central doctrine of justification by faith the criterion 
of canonicity. 1 lie thus placed the material or subjective prin 
ciple of Protestantism above the formal or objective principle, the 
truth above the witness of the truth, the doctrine of the gospel 
above the written Gospel, Christ above the Bible. Romanism, 
on the contrary, places the church above the Bible. But we must 
remember that Luther first learnt Christ from the Bible, and 

1 " This, he says in the Preface to the Epistle of .Tame-, " is the true touch- 
etone (<l-r rcchtc, J rilfxtcin} of all books, whether they make Christ their sole 
topic: ami aim" [literally drive Christ, Chri<tnm treibcn~\, "<>r not; since all 
Scripture shows Christ (Rom. 3), and St. Paul wishes t<> know nothing hut 
Christ (1 Cor. 2). That which does not teach Christ is n t apostolic, though 
St. Pet<>r and Paul should teach it; agnin. that which preaches Christ is 
apostolic, though Judas, Annas, Pilate and Herod should say it." The devil 
himself can (mote Scripture. 


especially from the Epistles of Paul, which furnished him the 
kcv for the understanding of the scheme of salvation. 

He made a distinction, moreover, between the more important 
and the less important hooks of the New Testament, according to 
the extent of their evangelic purity and force, and put Hebrews, 
Jame-, Jude, and Revelation at the end of the (Jerman Bible. 1 

lie -tales liis reason in the Preface to the Hebrews a.s follows: 
Hitherto we have had the right and genuine books of the New 
Testament. The four that follow have been differently esteemed 
in olden time.-. He therefore appeals to the ante-Nicene tradi 
tion, but his chief objection was to the contents. 

lie di-liked, most of all, the Epistle of James because he could 
not harmonize it with Paul s teaching on justification bv faith 
w tlhnnt work-, 2 and he called it an epistle of straw as compared 
with the genuine upostolic writings. 3 

1 In this distinction Carlstadt had preceded him in his Iwok, 7)e Oinon. .Scnp- 

f/n> (Wittenb. 1-vjO, reprinted in < miner s Znr frVWi. </-.< Knnon*, IS 17, ]>. J .U- 
411 ). Carlstadt divided tin- books of (lie canon into throe onlim;*: (1) l> I>ri 
snmm w <li /ni nti.< ( the lVntateu<-h, though not written by MO-OS, and the 
Go-pels); (L l *-r>m<l<i //y/i //<///.- | the Prophets and 1") Kpi<tles ; (: . j /. -ft me 
di /nitnti< (the Jewish I lagio^rapha and the seven Antilegomena ul the New 

Mle rejects the ppistle first of all, "because it irives righteousness to works 
in Hat contradiction to Paul and all other Scriptures;" secondly, " because, 
while undertaking to teach Chri.-tian people, it does not once mention the pas- 
8ion. the rcsiirn eiic.ii, die Spirit of Christ ; it names Christ twice, hut teaches 
nothing about him; it call- the law a law of liberty, while Paid calls it a law 
of bondage, of wrath, of death and of .-in." He oliered hi- doctor s cap lo any 
who could harmoni/.e Jaine- and I anl on the subject of justification, and jc<ts 
about the trouble MelanchthMii to>.k to <lo it. lie made the contradiction 
unnecessarily -tr>nirer bv inscrtin:, ]\\* nlli-in (./(/) before (lurch il>n (llunhfn in 
Rom. : . : _ >. Hi- tir-t attacked the l-lpi-th- of .lame- in his book /> ( i/>tii -it ll 
Buhi/lonirn, in bVjn, where he call- it an epi-tle unworthy of the apostolical 
spirit. Carlstadt secm< to have fallen out \\itii I.titln-r in the same year <>n 
this niie-tic.n ; for he defended the Mpi-th- against the frimht (t,-i/>nn> tit<i of a 
bnniui Knrerrlo* mniriti r rn- (who can be no other than Luther), in his lunik 
I), rniiriniri .i .^ri/>/iiri.-; Wittenberg: 1 . 1 i JU. 

The cvimp.irion must not be overlooked. Tie ?ays : j/r^rti >, i*. r as com- 
pared with the KpUtlesnf I ml. I .-ter and John, previously mentioned. S<H* 
the pas-a. r e in full below. He could not be blind to the merits of James u.s a 
fre-h, vigorous tea her of practi.-al c;,ri-ti:inity. 


He objected to the Epistle to the Hebrews because it seems to 
deny (in chs. 6, 10 and 12) the possibility of repentance after 
baptism, contrary to the Gospels and to Paul, and betrays in 
ch. 2: 3, a post-apostolic origin. He ascribed the authorship to 
Apollos by an ingenious guess, which, though not supported by 
ancient tradition, has found great favor with modern commen 
tators and critics, 1 chiefly because the authorship of any other 
possible writer (Paul, Barnabas, Luke, Clement) seems to offer in 
superable difficulties, while the description of Apollos in Acts IS : 
24-28, compared with the allusions in 1 Cor. 1: 12; .3 : ; 4: ; 
1() : 12, seems to fit exactly the author of this anonymous Epistle. 

He called the Epistle of Judc an "unnecessary epistle," a mere 
extract from Second Peter and post-apostolic, filled with apocry 
phal matter, and hence rejected by the ancient fathers. 

He could at first find no sense in the mysteries of the Apocalypse 
and declared it to be " neither apostolic nor prophetic," because 
it deals only with images and visions, and yet, notwithstanding 
its obscurity, it adds threats and promises, " though nobody knows 
what it means" ; but afterwards he modified his judgment when 
the Lutheran divines found in it welcome weapons against the 
church of Rome. 

The clearest utterance on this subject is found at the close of 
his preface to the first edition of his German version of the Xew 
Testament (1-122), but it was suppressed in later editions. 2 

Luther s view of inspiration was both strong and free. With 
the profoundest conviction of the divine contents of the Bible, he 
distinguished between the revealed truth itself and the human 
wording and reasoning of the writers. He says of one of the 

1 Rleek, de Wot to, Tlmluck, Liincmann, Kendrick (in Lange), Hilgcnfeld, 
de Pressensd, Davidson, Aiford, Farrar, and others. 

2 Sec note at the end of this section. His Tnble Tnlk contains hold and orig 
inal utterances on Ksther, Eeelesiastes and other hooks of the Old Testament; 
see Kenss on the (<<nwn, p. 330 sqq. While Luther on the one hand limited the 
canon, he seemed disposed on the other hand to extend it, when he declared 
Melanchthon s Loci Theologici to he worthy of a place in the canon. But this 
was merely an extravagant compliment. 


rabbinical argument.- "f his favorite apostle: " My dear brother 
Paul, this argument won t stick." 

Luther was, h\vcver, fully aware of the subjective and con 
jectural character of the.-e opinions, and had no intention of 
obtruding them on the church: hence- he modified his prefaces in. 
later editions. He judged the Scriptures from an exclusively 
dogmatic, and one-sidedly Pauline standpoint, and did not con 
sider their gradual historical growth. 

A lew Lutheran divines followed him in assigning a subordi 
nate position to the seven A utilegomena of the New Testament ; 2 
but the Lutheran church, with a sound instinct, accepted for 
popular u.-e the traditional catholic canon (not even expressly 
excluding the Jewish Apocrvplia), yet retained his arrangement 
of the books of the New TV-lament. 3 The Rationalists, of course, 
revived, intensified, and carried to excess the bold opinions of 
Luther, but iii a spirit against which he would himself rai.-e the 
strongest protest. 

The Reformed divines were more conservative than Luther in 
accepting the canonical books, but more decided in rejecting the 
Apoervpha of the Old Testament. The Reformed Conies-ions 
u.-uallv enumerate the canonical books. 

/uingli objected only to the Apocalypse and made no doctrinal 
use of it, because he did not deem it an inspired book, written 
bv the same John who wrote the fourth Gospel. 4 In this view 
he has manv followers, but the severest critical school of ourdavs 
(that of Tubingen) assigns it to the Apostle John. Wolfgang 

< <>ni|>. lii> comiiu-nts on llit- allegory of Sarah and linear in his Latin Com. 
on (ial. M: IT. , Krl. .-.I. II. L .VJ). 

2 llrt-ntins, Klarius, Urbanas Kegius, the authors of the Magdeburg Centuries, 
and ( hfiimit/.. 

3 None t,f the svmUlical hooks <.f the Lutheran church LMVI- a list ,,f the 
canon, hut tlu- Formula of Concord i p. ">70 ) declares that the i>/-njili< lim ft 
aitoitl ilicn *<TII>IU \ . ( .\. 7 ." arc tin- " nnirn rr</uln it nnrma Xi-cumlinii ijimin inn- 
nut /" /ni itu iiiim> .*ifH il irt ii i .< !(-//, ;) (// 7 I ltlifiirt oyiywr/vi/." 

4 " / x . \f i< it-nil/ 1 mi ii lniKiiil fir I, in KunltU-hnfft (Hi, (bun fa nil fin fiihlixrli liurh 
!.-/. M (/;., t-i 1. Schidt-r and Sclniltlit---, II. 1. j>. li . .i. In another |>huv he says: 
" A i will, lilit-r nun *n]>it <M <t iinji-itimit Jaiuu. n 1)>: clnr. \\rbi Dei, |>. 31U. 


Musculus mentions the seven Autilegoraena, but includes them 
in the general catalogue of the New Testament; and Oecolam- 
padius speaks of six Autilegomeua (omitting the Hebrews), 
as holding an inferior rank, but nevertheless appeals to their 
testimony. 1 

Calvin had no fault to find with James and Jude, and often 
quotes Hebrews and Revelation as canonical books, though he 
wrote no commentary on Revelation, probably because he i elt 
himself incompetent lor the task. He is silent about Second and 
Third John. He denies, decidedly, the Pauline authorship, but 
not the canonicity, of Hebrews. 2 He is disposed to assign Second 
Peter to a pupil of Peter, who wrote under the auspices and by 
direction of the Apostle; but he guards in this case, also, against 
unfavorable inferences from the uncertainty of origin. 3 

Calvin clearly saw the inconsistency of giving the Church the 
right of determining the canon after denying her right of making 
an article of faith. He therefore placed the canon on the 
authority of God who bears testimony to it through the voice of 
the Spirit in the hearts of the believer. The eternal and inviol 
able truth of God, he says, is not founded on the pleasure and 
judgment of men, and can be as easily distinguished as light from 
darkness, and white from black. In the same line, Peter Vcr- 
milius denies that " the Scriptures take their authority from the 
Church. Their certitude is derived from God. The Word is 
older than the Church. The Spirit of God wrought in the hearts 
of the hearers and readers of the Word so that thcv recognized it 
to be truly divine." This view is clearly set forth in several 

1 See Txeuss, p. P.15 sq. Fn<;. ed. 

2 In the introduction to his Com. on Hebrews: " 7v/o lit Patdum (tuctnrem 
ar/noxctiin a/h/uci <v/^v>." His reasons are. the difference of style and of the 
docrndi ratio, i\n<\ because the writer counts himself with the disciples of the 
Apostles ( 2: .">); lut nevertheless he accepts the hook a> inspired and canonical, 
because it more clearly than any other book treats of the priesthood and sacri 
fice of Christ. 

In Arrjmn. F/>. St-c. / ///, he notes "manift & iim dixcrimcn" between the first 
and second Kpistle, and adds: " Snni ct (diip prohnbilfA conjecture e.r qiiibius colli- 
gere licet allt/ int t.> potius (junta Petri" but he sees in it " nihil Pctro indiynum." 


Calvinistic Confessions. 1 In its exclusive form it is diametrically 
opposed to the maxim of Augustin, otherwise so highlv esteemed 
hv the Reformers : u 1 should not believe the gospel except as 
moved bv the authority of the Church. JJut the two kinds of 
evidence supplement each other. The human authority of tradi 
tion though not the final ground of belief, is indispensable as an 
historical witness of the genuineness and cauonicity, and is of great 
weight in conflict with Rationalism. There is no essential an 
tagonism between the Bible and the Church in the proper sense of 
the term. They are inseparable. The Church was founded by 
Chri-t and tlic apostles through the preaching of the (iciiif. \Vord 
of (iod, and the founders of the Church are also the authors of 
the irritt.n Word, which continues to be the .-hining and guiding 
light of the Church ; while the Church in turn is the guardian, 
preserver, translator, propagator, and expounder of the Uible. 

li. The liberal views of the Reformers on inspiration and the 
canon were abandoned after the middle of the sixteenth century, 
and were succeeded bv compact and consolidated sy.-tems of 
theoloo-v. The evangelical scholasticism of the seventeenth cen- 
turv >tn>iiolv resembles, both in its virtues and defects, the catho- 

The Second Helvetic Confc^i-fi. c. 1 and 2, rind tlie P.eliric (onfe-ion. :irt. 
), comhine I lie totimotiv of tr:iditin :ind that of the Holy Spirit, lull lay chief 
Btres.s UJKIII the latter. So the < iallicau Couf., art. 4 : "We know these I >ooks 
t<> he canonical and the sure rule of our faith, not >o imifh hy the common 
accord and consent ofth<- church (nn tmit pur If cominttn nn-oril <( c<>ii.<>-ntmn-nt 
<[> r- /ll-i], a* hv the tc-timonv and inward illumination of the Holy Spirit, 
>vlii.-h enahle-? IH to di-iin^iii-h them from oiht r e- < lesiastical 1 ooks, upon 
\\liiih, li..\vevi-r ii-el ul, we caiiii"t f-.nnd any :irtieles of faith." The \Ve^t- 
miiKtcr < oiif- ^\\). <-h. I. -1. set^ a-ide the testimony <,f traditinn, s:iyiii^: "The 
autlioritv <,! the Holy Scriptnn-. for which it on-lit to he helieved and oheyed, 
dei-endeth in,! upon the te>tim"iiy of any man or church, hut i/A-///i/ ii| on (iod 
who i- truth itvlf . the Author there-.f ; and tin ref.rc it i- to he received, 
l>ec;in-e it is the Word of < io<l." Tin- Scripture proofs ^iven are, J ! t. 1: I .i, 
L l ; liTim. II: I -; 1 John ~> : J ; 1 1 hi-ss. J: 115; hut they have no hearing upon 
the <pie>tion of cauonicity. 

2 " K<i<> er<i ii / /io ii iu rr, ih;-nn, ni*i mf mnrrrrl trrl viaf tuirlm-ita*" Cmitm F.p. 
/ (/ n<ln ,n. . c. "). A thoroughly i;,,m:in catholic principle in op|M>!>itii.n to the 
Maniclia-n li-r.-y. I .ut tin- le-timoiiy of the church is only in 
the historv of the origin o! the scvi-ral hooks, and the formation of the r/o/j. 


lie scholasticism of the Middle Ages which systematized and 
contracted the patristic theology, except that the former was based 
oil the Bible, the latter on church tradition. In the conflict with 
Romanism the Lutheran and Calvinistic scholastics elaborated a 
stiff, mechanical theory of inspiration in order to set an infallible 
book against an infallible pope. The Bible was identified with 
the AVord of God, dictated to the sacred writers as the penmen 
of the Holy Ghost. Even the classical purity of style and the 
integrity of the traditional text, including the Massoretic punc 
tuation, were asserted in the face of stubborn facts, which came to 
light as the study of the origin and history of the text advanced. 
The divine side of the Scriptures was exclusively dwelled upon, 
and the human and literary side was ignored or virtually denied. 
Hence the exegetical poverty of the period of Protestant scholasti 
cism. The Bible was used as a repository of proof texts for pre 
viously conceived dogmas, without regard to the context, the dif 
ference between the Old and New Testaments, and the gradual 
development of the divine revelation in accordance with the needs 
and capacities of men. 

4. It was against this Protestant bibliolatry and symbololatry 
that Rationalism arose as a legitimate protest. It pulled down 
one dogma after another, and subjected the Bible and the canon 
to a searching criticism. It denies the divine inspiration of the 
Scriptures, except in a wider sense which applies to all works of 
genius, and treats them simply as a gradual evolution of the 
religious spirit of Israel and the primitive Christian Church. It 
charges them with errors of fact and errors of doctrine, and 
resolves the miracles into legends and myths. It questions the 
Mosaic origin of the Pentateuch, the genuineness of the David ic 
Psalms, the Solomonic writings, the prophecies of Deutcro-Isaiah 
and Daniel, and other books of the Old Testament. It assigns 
not only the Euscbian Antilegomena, but even the Gospels, Acts, 
the Catholic Epistles, and several Pauline Epistles to the post- 
apostolic age, from A. I). 70 to 150. 

In its later developments, however, Rationalism has been 


obliged to retreat and make several concessions to orthodoxy. 
The canonical (iospels and Acts have gained by further investiga 
tion and discovery; 1 and the apostolic authorship of the lour 
great Epistles of Paul to the Romans, Corinthians, and (ialatians 
and the Apocalypse of John is fullv admitted bv the severest 
school of eritieism (that of Tubingen ). A nio-t important admis 
sion: for live books teach or imply all the leading facts and 
truths of the gospel, and overthrow the verv foundations of 
Rationalism. With the Christ of the Gospels, and the Apostle 
Paul of hi- acknowledged Kpi>tles, Christianity is safe. 

ltationali>m was a radical revolution which swept like a Hood 
over tin- Continent of Europe. Hut it is not negative and 
destructive only. It has made and is still making valuable con 
tributions to biblical philology, textual critic-ism, and grammalico- 
hi.-torical exegesis. It enlarge.- the knowledge <f the conditions 
and environments of the Hible, and of all that lu.-longs to the 
human and temporal side of Christ and Christianity. Jt culti 
vates with special zeal and learning the sciences of Critical Intro 
duction, Biblical Theology, the Life of Christ, the Apostolic and 
post-Apostolic Ages. 

o. The.-e acquisitions to exegetical and historical theology are a 
permanent gain, and are incorporated in the new evangelical 
theology, which arose in conflict with Rationalism and in de 
fense of the positive Christian faith in the divine facts of 
revelation and the doctrines of salvation. The conflict is still 
going on with increasing strength, but with the sure prospect of 

1 Thus M:irk is regarded ]>\ nirinv nationalists as the primitive (Jo-pel hased 
on 1 eter s sermons. Matthew has received vuluaMr testimonies from the dis- 
c- > very of the. < i reek Harnahas who quotes him twice, ami from the disco verv of 
the I >idache of the Apostles. \vhi<-li contains ahoiit twentv reminiscences from 
the first (iospel. ( >n the .lohannean question the Ttihin^en erilio have I teen 
forced to retreat from 17<ito MM. IL II. 1 ID, almost to the liletiim- of John. The 
A< ts have received new confirmation of their historical rredihilitv from the 
excavations in ( yprus and Kphesnx, and the minute t4-st of the naiiti<al vocah- 
ulary of chapter J7 \>\- an experienced seaman. <>n all the>e points see the 
respective sections in the first volume of this llittunj, eh. XII. p. ">) . sqq. ; 
710 sqq.; Tolsqq.; an<l boowicj. 


the triumph of truth. Christianity i.s independent of all critical 
questions on the canon, and of human theories of inspiration ; 
else Christ would himself have written the Gospels, or commanded 
the Apostles to do so, and provided for the miraculous preserva 
tion and inspired translation of the text. His "words are spirit, 
and are life." "The flesh profiteth nothing." Criticism and 
speculation may for a while wander away from Christ, but will 
ultimately return to Him who furnishes the only key for the solu 
tion of the problems of history and human life. "No matter," 
says the world-poet Goethe in one of his last utterances, "how 
much the human mind may progress in intellectual culture, in 
the science of nature, in ever-expanding breadth and depth : it 
will never be able to rise above the elevation and moral culture 
which shines in the Gospels." 


The famous close of the Preface of Luther s edition of the German New 
Testament \vas omitted in later editions, but is reprinted in Walch s ed. XIV. 
104 S(]([., and in the Erlnngen Frankf. ed. LXIII. (or eleventh vol. of the 
Vd ntisehte. Dentxrhc tiehriften), p. 114 sq. It is verbatim as follows: 

" Aits du seni (dlen kannsf du nu recht urtheilen untcr alien B uchfm t nnd Unter- 
schied nchmen, vdchs (lie bexten sittd. J)cnii, namlich, i*t Johannis Evangdion, and 
St. Panli Episteln, sonderlich die zu den Romern,und Sanct Peters erste Epistel der 
ree/t/i 1 Kern a nd Mark unter alien Biichem; velcJte auch bdlij die crstcn .win 
sollte/i, nnd eiiieni /!(/( irhcn Christen zu rathen ware, das* er diexelben am erxtcn nnd 
allenneixten /( /-.v, iut/1 ilmi dm-ch tiiylich Lesen sogemein mdclite^alsdas taylich Rrod. 

" ])fnn in dit iti n /indict [Jimlcst"] dn nicfit rid Wcrk und Wunderthatcn Christi 
brxrhrifbt n ; dn (uidixt abrr <jar meinterlich (u/f;f/<\*t/ ii Ii< ii, win der Gldiibe an Christum 
Si uid, Tod >nid IIo/lc ubenrindet, und das Lebcn, Gerechligkeit und Seligkeit yibt. 
Wdclix dif I ci-htc Art ixt f/cx Kvangclii, wie dn gehoret fta*l. 

" l)<<nn n o ich jc der dux manydn *<>Ut, der Wcrke oder dcr Predigt Christi, so 
wollt ii-h liibi r d<T IIV/7.T, denn xcincr Prcdiyt mangeln. Dcnn die 1\ r er/:c helfen 
mir nichfx ; ojbcr seine Tl o/ - /< , die gcben dax J^/e/jen, n~ie er sdbst an (ft (Joh. o. V. 51). 
W<il nu Johannes (jar wenigWerke vo/i Chrixto, aber gar rid seiner Predigt schreibt; 
wiederinnb die (indcrn dret Evangel isten viel seiner Werke^ went / seiner Worte 
beschreiben: ixt Jnhannis Kvangflion das cinige zarte, recht(e] Hanptev(ingeUon,und 
din andr< n dreieit veil furzuzichen undhoher z>i heben. Al*o (nidi Xanct I aidus und 
J ctriix Einntdn veil fiber die drei Erungelia, Matlhai, Marci nn<l Luca vorgehen. 

"SnntiiHi, Sand Jolianttis Emngd, nnd seine erxte Epistd, Sanct Pauhts Epis- 
tel(n), sondi i-licfi die zu den Tiiiinern, Gnlatern, Ephcsern, nnd Sanct Peters erste 
Ejtixtel, <l<i.-< .-///// die liiieher, die dir Christum zeigen, >/nd (dies lefireii, r/c/.s- dir zu 
U i&sen not/i and sdig i.<t, ob dn solton kcin ander Bnch noch Lehre nuinmer [nimmer- 


Wt A/ ] .-! /! ".</ and fmri.ft [/iu/v>V]. Jhinnnb ixt Sunrt Jtikulm Epiatel cin ncht stroh- 
ern(f) J" i>ij<tfl t yij n fi , d< nn .fie dock kcin(c) ecangcluch(f) Art an iltr hat. l>och 
dawn utiUr in undent Vorreden" 

10. Protestantism and Dcnominationalutm. 1 

Tlu i (ircck C liiuvh exists as a patriarchal hierarchy based on 
tin- tir.-t seven cecumeuical councils with four ancient local centres : 
Jcni.-alem, Antio.-h, Alexandria, Constantinople; to which must 
IK- added, since 1725, St. Petersburg where the Holy Synod of 
orthodox Russia resides. The patriarch of Constantinople claims 
a primacy of honor, but no supremacy of jurisdiction over his fel 

The Roman Church is an absolute monarchy, headed by an infal 
lible pope who claims to be vicar of Christ over all Christendom 
and unchurches the Greek and the Protestant churches as schis- 
matical and heretical. 

The Reformation came out of the bosom of the Latin Church 
and broke up the visible nnitv of Western Christendom, but pre 
pared the wav for a higher spiritual unity on the basis of freedom 
and the full development ofeverv phase of truth. 

In-tead of one organization, we have in Protestantism a number 
of distinct national churches and confessions or denominations. 
Koine, tin- local centre of units , was replaced bv Wittenberg, 
Zurich, ( leiieva, Oxford, Cambridge, Edinburgh. The one great 
JMIJM- had to -urrender to many little popes of smaller pre 
tensions, yet eaeh claiming and exercising sovereign power in 
hi- domain. Tin- hierarchical rule gave way to the ctcsaropapal 
or Kra-tian principle, that the owner of the territory is al-o tin- 
owner of it- religion (ciijux > <\ f /io, cju* 7v7/V//o), a principle first 

1 Drnnminationnlixm is, I lolicvo, an Aincrii-an term of recent origin, hut use 
ful aii l iid cs-iiry t< fXjuTss the !:n t, without praise or hlumo, that Protestant 
f hristianity exists in various p<-rle-ii:i>ti -al orirani/atioiH, some of which arc 
la rye, others small, some cliHerini, in doctrine, others onlv in polity an<l worship, 
some liheral ami catholic, otlu-rN ontraet d ami exclusive. I u>-e it in this 
m-ntral --eii-r, in prel i n IK e In Coiiff."^innnli>rm wliich implies ronfesHlonal "r 
doctrinal difference, ami Sectarianism which implies higotrv and is a term of 


maintained by the Byzantine Emperors, and held also by the 
Czar of Russia, but in subjection to the supreme authority of the 
oecumenical councils. Every king, prince, and magistrate, who 
adopted the Reformation, assumed the ecclesiastical supremacy or 
summepiscopate, and established a national church to the exclusion 
of Dissenters or Nonconformists who were cither expelled, or 
simply tolerated under various restrictions and disabilities. 

Hence there are as many national or state churches as there are 
independent Protestant governments; but all acknowledge the 
supremacy of the Scriptures as a rule of faith and practice, and 
most of them also the evangelical confessions as a correct sum 
mary of Scripture doctrines. Every little principality in mon 
archical Germany and every canton in republican Switzerland has 
its own church establishment, and claims sovereign power to 
regulate its creed, worship, and discipline. And this power cul 
minates not in the clergy, but in the secular ruler who appoints 
the ministers of religion and the professors of theology. The 
property of the church which had accumulated by the pious 
foundations of the Middle Ages, was secularized during the 
Reformation period and placed under the control of the state, 
which in turn assumed the temporal support of the church. 

This is the state of things in Europe to this day, except in the 
independent or free churches of more recent growth, which man 
age their own ailairs on the voluntary principle. 

The transfer of the episcopal and papal power to the head of 
the state was not contemplated by the Reformers, but was the 
inevitable consequence of the determined opposition of the whole 
Roman hierarchy to the Reformation. The many and crying 
abuses which followed this change in the hands of selfish and 
rapacious princes, were deeply deplored by Melanchthon, who 
would have consented to the restoration of the episcopal hier 
archy on condition of the freedom of gospel preaching and gospel 

The Reformed church in Switzerland secured at first a greater 
degree of independence than the Lutheran ; for Zwingli controlled 


the magistrate of Zurich, and Calvin ruled supreme in Geneva 
under institutions of his own founding; but both closely united 
the civil and ecclesiastical power, and the former gradually 
assumed the supremacv. 

Scandinavia and Fngland adopted, together with the Reforma 
tion, a 1 rote-taut episcopate which divides the ecclesiastical 
suprcmacv with the head of the state; yet even there the civil 
ruler is legally the supreme governor of the cliurch. 

The great e.-t Protestant church-establishments or national 
churches are the Church of Fngland, much weakened by dissent, 
but -till the richc.-t and mo-t powerful of all ; the I nitcd Fvan- 
gclical Church of Prussia which, since 1817, includes the formerly 
separated Lutheran and Reformed confessions; the Lutheran 
Church of Saxony (with a Roman Catholic king); the Lutheran 
Churches of Denmark, Sweden, and Norway; the Reformed 
Chun-lies of Switzerland, and Holland; and the Reformed or 
Pre-bvteriaii Church of Scotland. 

< Jri jinallv. all evangelical Protestant churche> were embraced 
un<ler two confessions or denominations, the Lutheran which pro- 
vailed and -till prevails in Germany and Scandinavia, and the Re 
formed which took root in Switzerland, France, Holland, Finland 
and Scotland, and to a limited extent also in Germany, Bohemia 
and Hungary. The Lutheran church follows the larger portion 
of (ierman and Scandinavian emigrants to America and other 
countries, the Reformed church in its various branches is found 
in all the Hutch and IJritish colonies, and in the United State-. 

From these two confessions should be distinguished the An 
glican Church, which the continental historian-* from defective 
information u-ually count with the Reformed Church, but which 
stand- midway between evangelical Protestantism and Roman 
Catholicism, and may therefore be called Anglo-Catholic. She 
is indeed moderately Reformed in her doctrinal articles, 1 but in 

1 Tlic- Tliirty-ninp Articles of Religion, revised under Kli/.ahdh (] >M ami 
1571 l, :irr liorrowcd in part, vcrl>atirn. frnm the An^lmrtr Confession of 1">.">0 
and the Wiirtemberg Confession of lo /J, lut are niodt-rately Calvinistic in the 


polity and ritual she is much more conservative than the Calvin- 
i.stic and even the Lutheran confession, pays greater deference to 
the testimony of the ancient fathers, and lays stress upon her 
unbroken episcopal succession. 

The confessional division in the Protestant camp arose very 
early. It was at first confined to a difference of opinion on the 
eucharistic presence, which the Marburg Conference of 1529 
could not remove, although Luther and Zwingli agreed in four 
teen and a half out of fifteen articles of faith. Luther refused 
any compromise. Other differences gradually developed them 
selves, on the ubiquity of Christ s body, predestination, and bap 
tismal regeneration, which tended to widen and perpetuate the 
split. The union of the two Confessions in Prussia and other 
German states, since LSI 7, has not really healed it, but added a 
third Church, the United Evangelical, to the two older Confessions 
which still continue separate in other countries. 

The controversies among the Protestants in the sixteenth 
century roused all the religious and political passions and cast a 
gloom over the bright picture of the Reformation. Melauchthon 
declared that with tears as abundant as the waters of the river 
p]lbe he could not express his grief over the distractions of 
Christendom and the "fury of theologians." Calvin also, when 
invited, with Melanchthon, Bullinger and Luzer, in 15-32, by 
Archbishop Cranmer to Lambeth Palace for the purpose of 
framing a concensus-creed of the Reformed churches, was willing 
to cross ten seas for the cause of Christian union. 1 ]>ut the noble 
scheme was frustrated by the stormy times, and still remains a 
plum dcxidcrium. 

doctrine of the Lord s Supper, and on predestination ; the five Lambeth Articles 
of 1595, and the Irish Articles of Archbishop Ussher (1015) are strongly Cal- 
vinistic, and the latter furnished the basis of the Westminster Confession. But 
the Lambeth Articles and the Irish Articles were gradually forgotten, and the 
Book of Common Prayer which is based on the office of Sarum, has practically 
much greater influence than even the Thirty-nine Articles. See SchafF, Creeds 
of Chri*trn<lom, vol. I. 024 sqq., (530 sqq., G5S sqq., 002 sqq. 

1 See the correspondence in Cranmer s Works, publ. by the Parker Society, 
vol. II. 430-433. 


Much a> we must deplore and condemn sectarian strife and 
bitterness, it would be as unjust to charge them on Protestantism, 
as to charge upon Catholicism the violent passions of the trini- 
tarian, christological and other controversies of the Nicene age, 
or the fierce animosity between the Greek and Latin Churches, or 
the envv and jealousy of the monastic orders of the Middle Ages, 
or the unholv rivalries between Jansenists and Jesuits, Gallicans 
and Ultnimontanists in modern Romanism. The religious pas 
sions irrow out of the selfishness of depraved human nature in 
spite of Christianity, whether Greek, Roman, or Protestant, and 
mav ari.-e in anv denomination or in anv congregation. Paul had 
to rebuke the partv spirit in the church at Corinth. The rancor 
of theological schools and parties under one and the same govern 
ment i> as threat and often greater than amon^ separate rival 
denominations. Providence overrules these human weaknesses 
for the clearer development of doctrine and discipline, and thus 
brings good out of evil. 

The tendency of Protestantism towards individualism did not 
stop with the three Reformation Churches, but produced other 
divi.-ions wherever it was left free to formulate and organize the 
differences of theological parties and schools. This wa< the case 
in Kngland, in con.-ecjuencc of what mav be called a second 
Reformation, which agitated that country during the seventeenth 
centurv, while (Jermanv was passing through the horrors of the 
Thirty Yea is War. 

The Toleration Act of IfJXJ), after the final overthrow of the 
semi-j>opi-h and treacherous dynasty of the Stuarts, uave the 
Dissenters who were formerly included in the( hmvh of Kntrland, 
the liberty to organize themselves into independent denominations 
under the names of Presbyterians, Independents or Congregation- 
alists, Baptists, Quakers; all professing the principles of the 
Reformation, but differing in minor points of doctrine, and 
esjK cially in discipline, and the mode of worship. 

The Methodist revival of religion which shook England and 
the American colonies during the eighteenth century, gave rise 


to a new denomination which spread with the enthusiasm of an 
army of conquest and grew into one of the largest and most influ 
ential communions in English-speaking Christendom. 

In Scotland, the original unity of the Reformed Kirk was 
likewise broken up, mostly on the question of patronage and the 
sole headship of Christ, so that the Scotch population is now 
divided chiefly into three branches, the Established Church, the 
United Presbyterian Church, and the Free Church of Scotland ; 
all holding, however, to the Westminster standards. 

In Germany, the Moravian brotherhood acquired a legal exist 
ence, and fully earned it by its missionary zeal among the heathen, 
its educational institutions, its pure discipline and stimulating 
influence upon the older churches. 

All these Churches of Great Britain and the Continent were 
transplanted by emigration to the virgin soil of North America, 
where they mingle on a basis of equality before the law and 
in the enjoyment of perfect religious freedom. But few com 
munions are of native growth. In America, the distinction 
between church and sect, churchmen and dissenters, has lost its 
legal meaning. And even in Europe it is weakened in the same 
proportion in which under the influence of modern ideas of tolera 
tion and freedom the bond of union of chnrch and state is relaxed, 
and the sects or theological parties are allowed to organize them 
selves into distinct communities. 

Thus Protestantism in the nineteenth century is divided into 
half a dozen or more large denominations, without counting the 
minor divisions which are even far more numerous. The Epis 
copalians, the Lutherans, the Presbyterians, the Congregational- 
ists, the Methodists, and the Baptists, are distinct and separate 
families. Nor is the centrifugal tendency of Protestantism 
exhausted, and may produce new denominations, especially in 
America, where no political power can check its progress. 

To an outside spectator, especially to a Romanist and to an 
infidel, Protestantism presents the aspect of a religious chaos or 
anarchy which must end in dissolution. 


But a calm review of the history of the last three centuries and 
the present condition of Christendom leads t<> a very different 

conclu-ion. It is an nndcniahle lact that Christianity has the 
strongest hold upon tin- people and displays the greatest vitality 
and energy at home and ahmad, in English-speaking countries, 
where it is most divided into denominations and sects A com 
parison of Kngland with Spain, or Scotland with Portugal, <>r the 
United States witli Mexico and Peru or Bra/il, proves the 
advantages of living variety over dead uniformity. Division is 
an element of weakness in attacking a consolidated foe, hut it also 
multiplies the missionary, educational, and converting agencies. 
Kverv Protestant denomination \\:\< its own field of usefulne.-s, 
and the can-" of Christianity itself would be seriously weakened 
and contracted l>v the extinction of anv one of them. 

Nor -hould \\ - e overlook the important fact, that the differences 
which divide the various Protestant denominations are not funda 
mental, and that the articles of faith in which thev auree are 
more numerous than those in winch they disagree. All accept 
the inspired Scriptures as the supreme rule of faith and practice, 
salvation l>v Lrrace, and we may say everv article of the Apostles 
Creed ; while in their views of practical Christianitv thev unani 
mously teach that our duties are comprehended in the roval law 
of love to ( Jod and to our fellow-men, and that true pietv and 
virtue consist in the imitation of the example of Christ, tlie T^ord 
and Saviour of all. 

There is then unitv in diversity as well as diversity in unitv. 

And the tendency to separation and division is counteracted l>v 
the opposite tendency to Christian union and denominational 
intercommunion which manifests it-ell in a rising degree and in 
various forms amon^ Protestants of the pre-riit day, especially in 
England and America, ami on missionary fields, and which is 
sure to triumph in the end. The -pirit of narrowness, ligotry 
and exclnsiveness must <jive wav at last to a -pirit of evangelical 
Catholicity, which leaves each denomination free to work out it- 
own mis-ion according to its -pecial charisma, and equally free 


to co-operate in a noble rivalry with all other denominations for 
the glory of the common Master and the building up of His 

The great problem of Christian union cannot be solved by 
returning to a uniformity of belief and outward organization. 
Diversity in unity and unity in diversity is the law of God in 
history as well as in nature. Every aspect of truth must be 
allowed room for free development. Every possibility of Chris 
tian life must be realized. The past cannot be undone; history 
moves zig-zag, like a sailing vessel, but never backwards. The 
work of church history, whether Greek, Roman, or Protestant, 
cannot be in vain. Every denomination and sect lias to furnish 
some stones for the building of the temple of God. 

And out of the greatest human discord God will bring the 
richest concord. 

11. Protestantism and Religious Liberty. 

Corap. Pn. SOIIAFF: The Development of Relic/ions Freedom, in "Christ and 
Christianity, X. Y., 1885, p. 270-291 ; and Church and stale, N.Y., 1888. 

The Reformation was a grand act of emancipation from spir 
itual tyranny, and a vindication of the sacred rights of conscience 
in matters of religious belief. Luther s bold stand at the Diet 
of Worms, in the face of the pope and the emperor, is one of the 
sublimest events in the history of liberty, and the eloquence of his 
testimony rings through the centuries. 1 To break the force of the 
pope, who called himself and was believed to be, the visible vicar 
of God on earth, and who held in his hands the keys of the 
kingdom of heaven, required more moral courage than to fight 
a hundred battles, and it was done by an humble monk in the 
might of faith. 

If liberty, both civil and religious, has since made progress, it 
is due in large measure to the inspiration of that heroic act. But 

1 Fronde says (Luther, p. 3$) : "The appearance of Luther before the Diet 
on this occasion, is one of the finest, perhaps it is the very finest, scene in 
human history." 


the progress was slow ami passed through many obstructions and 
reactions. " The mills ot (iod grind slowly, but wonderfully line. 

It seems one of the :-t rankest inconsistencies that the verv men 
who claimed and exercised the right of protest in essentials, 
should have; denied the same right to others, who differed from 
them in noiiessentials. After having secured liberty from the 
yoke of poperv, thev acted on the persecuting principles in which 
thcv had been brought up. Thev had no idea of toleration or 
libertv in our modern sense. Thev fought for liberty /// Christ, 
not fi nni Christ, for liberty to preach and teach the gosjK l, not 
to oppose or pervert it. Thev were as intensely convinced of 
their views as their Roman opponents of theirs. Thev abhorred 
popcrv and heresy as dangerous errors which should not be 
tolerated in a Christian society. John Knox feared one Romish 
ina.-s in Scotland more than an army of ten thousand French 
invaders. Tin; Protestant divines and princes of the sixteenth 
ceuturv felt it to be their dntv to (Jod and to themselves to snp- 
prc.-s and punish heresy as well as civil crimes. Thev con founded 
the law with the gospel. In man v eases they acted in retaliation, 
and in sell-defense. They were surrounded by a swarm of sects 
and errorists who claimed to be the legitimate children of the 
Reformation, exjx)sed it to the reproach of the enemies and 
threatened to turn it into confusion and anarchy. The world 
and the church were not ripe for a universal reign of liberty, nor 
are thev even no\v. 

Religious persecution arises not only from bigotry and fanati 
cism, and the ba.-e pa.--ions of malice, hatred ami uncharitahle- 
ness, but al-o from mi-taken /.eal for truth and orthodoxy, from 
the intensity of religions conviction, and from the alliance of 
religion with politics or the union of church and state, whereby 
an offi iice a^ain-t the one becomes an ollence against the other. 
Persecution is found in all religious, churches and sects which 
had the power; while on the other hand all persecuted religions, 
sects, and parties are advocates of toleration and freedom, at least 
for thcm-clvcs. Some of the U-st its well a.- the wor.-t men have 


been persecutors, believing that they served the cause of God by 
fighting his enemies. Saul of Tarsus, and Marcus Aurelius, the 
Stoic saint and philosopher on the throne of the Caesars, have in 
ignorance persecuted Christianity, the one from zeal for the law 
of Moses, the other from devotion to the laws and gods of Home. 
Charlemagne thought lie could best promote Christianity among 
the heathen Saxons by chasing them through the river for whole- 
sal*! baptism. St. Augustin, Thomas Aquinas, and Calvin were 
equally convinced of the right and duty of the civil magistrate to 
punish heresy. A religion or church established by law must be 
protected by law against its enemies. The only sure guarantee 
against persecution is to put all churches on an equal footing be 
fore the law, and either to support all or none. 

Church history is lurid with the infernal fires of persecutions, 
not only of Christians by heathens and Mohammedans, but of 
Christians by Christians. 

lint there is a silver lining to every cloud, and an overruling 
Providence in all human wickedness. The persecutions test 
character, develop moral heroism, bring out the glories of martyr 
dom, and sow the bloody seed of religious libertv. They fail of 
their object when the persecuted party has the truth on its side, 
and ultimately result in its victory. This was the case with 
Christianity in the Roman empire, and to a large extent with 
Protestantism. Thev suffered the cross, and reaped the crown. 

Let us now briefly survey the chief stages in the history of per 
secution, which is at the same time a history of religious liberty. 

1. The Xew Testament furnishes not a single passage in favor 
of persecution. The teaching and example of Christ and the 
Apostles are against it. Tie came to save the world, not to 
destroy it. He declared that His kingdom is not of this world. 
He rebuked the hasty Peter for drawing the sword, though it 
wa< in defense of his Master; and he preferred to suffer and to 
die rather than to call the angels of (Jod to aid against his ene 
mies. The Apostles spread the gospel bv spiritual means and 
condemned the use of carnal weapons. 


For three hundred years tin.- church followed their example 
and advm-ated freedom of o>n-rkn<v. She suffered persecution 
from .Jew- ami (lentiles, but never retaliated, ami made her wav 
to triti!ii|)h through the power of truth and a holy life scaled by 
a In-roi,- death. 1 

Lf. The change began with the union of church ami -late under 
Constant! ne the ( Jreat, in the Ka-t, and Charles the d real, in t he 
\\.-t. Both these emperor- reprint the continuation of the 
old Roman empire under the dominion of the -word and the cross. 

The mcdiieval theory of the Catholic Church assumes a clo-e 
alliance of C;esar and Pope, or the civil and ecclesiastical jo\\<r, 
in ( hri.-tian countries, and the exclusiyeiiess oi the ( a!hlic 
communion out of which there can lie no salvation. The Atha- 
na.-ian ( reed has no less than three damning clauses against all 
who dissent from the orthodox doctrine of the Trinity and the 
Incarnation. From thi- |><iint oi \-ie\\ e\ erv heresy, /. ., e\ erv 
dej>arture from catholic ortluxloxy, is a sin and a crime ariinst 
socieiv, and punishahlc Loth 1)\ the church and the state, though 
in ditlerent wavs. "The church does not thirst for blood," s l>ut 
excommunicates the obstinate heretic and hands him over to the 
civil magistrate to be dealt with according to law. And the laus 
of pa^an IJoine and Christian Koine were alike severe against 
evei v open dissent iVoin the state religion. The Mosaic legislation 
against idolatry and blasphemy, which \\ere punished lv death, 
as a crini" against the theoerae\- and a> tn-a-on against tlchoyah, 8 
seemed to atlbrd divine authority for similar enactment- under 

.In-tin M:irtvr. Ti-rtullian, an 1 I/n t.- iitiii< in:nK snne f tin- ^troiin st 
JI!M- in f.ivor \ n-liL i"iis lilu-rly. S.-- vol. I I. :;". and >!. ". 

: "/ . //< y/i/ ;//</( .-//// .- / / /). * in." a inaMiii IK 1<1 l>v the ( atholic rliurcli < V< D 

in tli.- .lark.-t .lay- i,f JM-I--C nli..n. \Vli.-n tin- liiM \>\ 1 of li.-i. tl.-s w:>* -li.-d 

bv nnii-r <>f tlic l .iii| Maxiinn- who jmnisliti! M>IIH I ri.^illianists in Spain 
liv the in :;^, St. Ant - t .-. <>t Milan ami St. Martin of l<>n My pr..- 
t->tr.| :i!_ :iinst tilt- cruelty :ni<l i.r.pkc- .irc-Minnnnion with tin- li*li|>s uh.. h .1 
approval it. 

:t llx. L"J: JO; Nnni. li- : 1 <; l.-n(. I. 11 ,: 1 II: 17: J-.>: I..-v. L -l: 1! H 1 ,; 
C"tn|>. 1 KiiiL w -1 : 1". I"-. l l - iav\ a> e.\.- a^ain.-t Stephen, the jinito- 
inartyr, Act- ! 11, K5 ; 7: ">S. 


the Christian dispensation, in spite of the teaching and example 
of Christ and his Apostles. The Christian emperors alter Con 
stantino persecuted the heathen religion and heretical sects, as 
their heathen predecessors had persecuted the Christians as ene 
mies of the national gods. The Justinian code, which extended its 
influence over the whole Continent of Kurope, declares Christian 
heretics and schismatics, as well as Pagans and Jews, incapable 
of holding civil or military offices, forbids their public assemblies 
and ecclesiastical acts, and orders their books to be burned. 

The leading divines of the church gave sanction to this theory. 
St. Augustin, who had himself been a heretic for nine years, was 
at first in favor of toleration. 1 But during the Donatist contro 
versy, he came to the conclusion that the correction and coercion 
of heretics and schismatics was in some cases necessary and whole 
some. II is tract on the Correction of the DonaHd* was written 
about 417, to show that the schismatical and fanatical Donatists 
should be subjected to the punishment of the imperial laws. He 
admits that it is better that men should be led to worship God 
by teaching than be driven to it by fear of punishment or pain; 
but he reasons that more men are corrected by fear. He derives 
the p roof from the Old Testament. The only passages from the 
New Testament which he is able to quote, would teach a com- 

1 lie begins his anti-Manicha?an work, A<1r. Jl]>!.<fn!(im Mnnichcpi (/ninn 
wont fundament!, written in . ! ( . 7, with these noble Christian sentiments: "My 
praver to the "lie true, almighty ( Jod, of whom and hy whom and in whom 
are all things, has been and is now, that in opposing and refuting the heresy 
of yon Maniclueans, as von mav after all he heretics more from thoughtless 
ness than fn>m malice. He would give me a ealm and composed mind, aiming 
at your recovery rather than your discomfiture. For, while the Lord hy his 
servants overthrows the kingdoms of error, his will concerning erring men, as 
far as they are men, is that they should he restored rather than destroyed. And 
in every case where, previous to the final judgment, (rod inflicts punishment 
. . . we must hclieve that the designed eflect is the recovery of men, and not 
their ruin ; while there is a preparation for the- final doom in the case of those 
who reject the means of recoverv." And in eh. ."> he says to the Manichteans, 
remembering his own former connection with them: " I can on no account treat 
you angrily ; for I must hear with yon now as formerly 1 had to hear with my 
self, and I must l>e a< patient witk yon as my associates were with me, when I 
went madly and blindly astray in your beliefs. 


pulsorv salvation rather tlian punishment, but are really not to 
the point. I le refers to Paul s conversion as a case of compulsion 
bv Chri>t himself, and misapplies the word of our Lord in the 
parable of the Supper: Constrain them to come in." Yet he 
professed, on the other hand, the correct principle that "no man 
can believe against his will." And he expressly discouraged 
the infliction of the death-penalty on heretics. 3 

Thomas Aquinas, next to Augustin, the highest authority 
among th<- canoni/ed doctors of the Latin church, went a step 
further. He proved, to the satisfaction of the Middle Ages, that 
the rites of idolaters, Jews, and infidels ought not to be tolerated, 4 
and that heretic.- or corrupt ors of the Christian faith, being worse 
criminals than debasers of money, ought (after due admonition) not 
onlv to be excommunicated by the church, but also be put to death 
bv the state.- lie does not quote a I>ible passage in favor of the 

1 I), (n.-wt. I)Q,tnti.*t. e. o, ? tM : "The Lord himself (Luke 14: J. H hids tlie 
guests in tin- lirst instance to he invite:! to His great supper, :uui afterwards to 
be com pel led. He understands tlie highways and hedges of the paraj>le to mean 
heresies and schisms, and the Supper of the Lord to mean the unity of the 
body of ( liri^t in the sacrament oi tlie altar and the bond of peace. He says 
(cli. 7, \ ~~> I that when the imperial laws against heresy first were sent to 
Africa, he with certain hrethren opposed their execution, hut afterwards justified 
them as a measure of catholic self-defense a<rainst the fanatical violence of the 
D .natists. The result was, that hoth Catholics and honatists were over 
whelmed in ruin hv the Vandal conquerors, who were Arian heretics. 

2 ( ,-! tl.r, nun ],<,!>.</ hoinn ni/. /n." See his /Vac/. X AT/. //* Jnnn. c. L\ 
where he says : "A man can come to church unwillingly, can approach the 
altar unwillin^ lv, partake of the sacrament unwillingly ; hut he can not helicve 
unh-ss he i^ willing. If we helieveil witli the hody, men mit lit lie made to he- 
lieve against their will. Hut lielievinir is not a tiling done with the Inxly." 
1 am pleased to find an approving reference to this sentence in the Kncyclicul 

of I ope Leo MIL of Nov. 1, 1SS.-,. 

* in a letter to I rocon-iil I)onatus ( Kp. ( .) he adjured him hy .Ie-us 
Christ, nrjt to repav the l>onatUts in kind, and savs: " ( urri>ji cw nijiinnt.-t, nun 

*S>nnm-i Ti -nl. S,-nin<l(i H i/,r, (^u:pst. x., Art. 11. 

6 find. (^ii:rst. xi., Art. \\, where- he ,-avs of heretics; " Mfrufntni nnn vohnn ab 
tcrlffui pi T cfcommitnicntinnfin pcjw rnrt, nftl flidin )><"> ninrtnn a iintndn riclmli . . . 
Si fnliuirii itt i unur r> I ulii mnl^fnclort it nf<i(tm JUT mrriil trt * nrinri}H & justr morti 
tmduntnr, wvilto mn<ji* hrrretiri Atntim <-T <jn<> d*i kmixi convitunintur, ftosgunt non 
soluin excommunicari, sot ct juxte wci>li. 


death-penalty of heretics; on the contrary he mentions three 
passages which favor toleration of heretics, 2 Tim. 2: 24; 1 Cor. 
11: 19; Matt. 1:5: 29, o(), and then tries to deprive them of 
their force by his argument drawn from the guilt of heresy. 

The persecution of heretics reached its height in the papal 
crusades against the Albigenses under Innocent III., one of the 
best of popes; in the dark deeds of the Spanish Inquisition ; and in 
the unspeakable atrocities of the Duke of Alva against the Protest 
ants in the Netherlands during his short reign (1567 1573). 1 

The horrible massacre of St. Bartholomew (A no;. 24, 1572) 
was sanctioned bv Pope Gregory Xlll., who celebrated it bv 
public thanksgivings, and with a medal bearing his image, an 
avenging angel and the inscription, Ugonottorum tstraycx. 2 

1 Gibbon asserts that "the number of Protestants who were executed [by the 
Spaniards] in a single province and a single reign, far exceeded that of the 
primitive martyrs in the space of three centuries, and in the Roman empire." 
Decline and l"\ill, Ch. xvi., towards the close. Grotius, to whom lie refers, states 
that the number of Dutch martyrs exceeded 100,000; Sarpi reduces the number 
to 50,000. Alva himself boasted that during his six years rule as the agent 
of Philip II., he had caused ls,000 persons to be executed, but this does not 
include the much larger number of those Avho perished by siege, battle, and in 
prisons. At the sack of Haarlem, 800 citizens, tied two and two and back to 
back, were thrown into the lake, and at Zutphen 500 more, in the same man 
ner, were drowned in the Yssel. See Motlev, 7i/>r of the Dutch Republic, vol. 
II. 504: "The barbarities committed amid the sack and ruin of those blazing 
and starving cities are almost beyond belief; unborn infants were torn from 
the living bodies of their mothers; women and children were violated by the 
thousands; and whole populations burned and backed to pieces by soldiers in 
every mode which cruelty, in its wanton ingenuity, could devise." 

2 See De Thou, 7//W. lib. LX I II. ; Giesder, IV. M04 (Am. ed.) ; Wachler, 
Di- /V/.svr, lM ed., Leip/iir, ISi S; Henry White, Ma^nrre of St. 
Ji irliiiitumeir, X. Y., ISIJS ; Henry M. I .aird. Ui*tarii of the R ixe of the Hurfiienotx, 
New York, 1S7H; Henri IJonlier, Ln Sctint-Bnrthelc tni/et In Ci itif/ucmodernc, 
I .iris, 1ST 1 .*; II. IJanmgarien, Fur dcr liartholoiiHentinficht, Strassburg, issi . 
The niunl)er of victims of that massacre in Paris and throughout France, is 
variously stated from lO.Ooo to 100,001); De Thou and Uanke give JO.OOO as 
the most moderate estimate (I*, 000 in Paris). Komaii Catholic writers defend 
the pope on the ground of ignorance; out be had abundant time to secure 
full information from his nuncio and others before the medals were struck. 
It is said that Philip II. of Spain, for the iirsL time in his life, laughed aloud 
when lie heard of the massacre. 


The infuinoiLS dragon nudes of Louis XIV. were a continuation 
of the same politieo-eccloia.-tical policy on a larger >ealc, aiming 
at the complete de-truction of Protestantism in l-Yamv. in viola 
tion of the solemn c<lict of hi- grandfather (101)8, revoked lijs")), 
and met the lull approval of the Roman clergy, including Bishop 
liossuet, the advocate of (iallican liberties. 1 

The nio-t cruel of the maiiv persecutions of the innocent \\a!- 
denses in the valleys of Piedmont took place in I GOO, and .-hocked 
by it< boundless violence the whole Protestant world, calling 
forth the vigorous pn>te.-t of Cromwell and in.-piring the famous 
Sonnet of Milton, his foreign secretary: 

"Avenge, () Lord, thy .slaughtered saints, whose bones 
Lie scattered on tin- Alpine mountains cold, 
Kven them who kept thv truth so jmre of old, 
When all our lathers worshiped storks and stones." 

These persecutions form the darkest, we may sav, the satanie 
cliapters in church hi-tory, and are a greater crime aoain-t 
humanity and ( hri.-tianity than all the heresies which thev in 
vain tried to eradicate. 

The Roman church has never repented of her complicity with 
these unchristian ads. ( )n the contrary, >he still holds the 
principle of persecution in connection with her doctrine that there 
is no salvation oiit-ide of her boxun. The papal Syllabus of 
l.SfM expre--ly condemn-, amonir the errors of modern times the 
doctrine of religious toleration. 2 Leo XIII. , a ^reat admirer of 

1 Sc- the l- n-ncli hUtori.-s of Martin, Ilmoit, Micln-let, I i- I-V-li.v. Ilankr, 
Soldan. Vin I olen/.. an<l other works .piotcd l.y II. M. Ilaird in S -hall -l I.-r/o- 
II.. l i:;7. Tin- immlx-r of I->-ii-h n-l iiL r ei-s i-i estimated a>- hi-li as MKI.IIUII ; 
I5aird n-diic ( > it to -liKMKK). M.irtin think-, that taking all in all. " |- raip - lo^t 
the a. tivity of ni..n- than a million .f men. and of the men that produced 
nio-t." Many f the desceixluits of the refugees whom the I- .leet..r I n deric 
William of I rns-ia so huspitahlv invited to I .crlin, fought aj/ain-t France in 
tin- Napoleonic wars, and aided in the terrihle retrihuti>n of Is7u. 

1 Arm m^j the errors i-otidemned are thc-e, ; X., TS and 7 . : " In the pn s-nt 
day it is no lon-.-r exp,,!i, nt that the < all,.. lie reli-ion shall IK- held as >/ 
only n-ll<finn of >! ntnt>; In l/i> , j< l .-., ,n --/ .(// ..//// //i/c -s nf i/-rx////." " U hi-nee il 
lias heen \\i-elv provided l-v law, that p-rons eomin_ to n-ide therein -hall 
enjoy the pnhlic exercise of their own worship." I lie condeinnalidi) of tolern- 


the theology of St. Thomas Aquinas, in his Encyclical of Nov. 1, 
1885, "concerning the Christian constitution of states," wisely 
moderates, but reaffirms, in substance, the political principles of 
his predecessor. 1 A revocation would be fatal to the Vatican 
dogma of papal infallibility. The practice of persecution is a 
question of power and expediency; and although isolated cases 
still occur from time to time, 2 the revival of mediaeval intolerance 

tion implies the approval of intolerance. See Sehafij Oviv/x of Christendom, 
II., 2 ,\ 2. Janssen, while he condemns the Protestant persecutions of ( atholics, 
approves the Catholic persecutions of Protestants in the time of the Rcforma- 
tion. lie says: " Far die kutholitche Gcittliclikcil, die kathntiwhcn Filrttfn uiul 
Magistrate and dax kalholitsche Ylk war c.s citi Kampf der Sebsterhaltung, u cnn sie 
Allcs aufbolcn, inn don Protestuntl-smus den EUngang in t/trc Gebiete zuwehren mid 
i/m, ici itn cr eingedrungen nar, damns wicder zu entfernen." Geschichte des deutschen 
TW/.v.s. III., i!) 3. 

1 After glorifying the Middle Ages and the hierarchical rule of the church 
over the state, Leo XIII. in that Encyclical proceeds to say: "No doubt the 
same excellent state of things would have continued, if the agreement of the 
two powers had continued, and greater things might rightfully have been 
expected, if men had obeyed the authority, the teaching office, and the counsels 
of the church with more fidelity and perseverance. For that is to be regarded 
as a perpetual law which Ivo, of Chart res, wrote to Pope Paschal II.: Wlien 
kingship and priesthood are agreed, the world is well ruled, the church flour 
ishes and bears fruit. I>ut when they are at variance, not only do little things 
not grow, but even great things fall into miserable ruin and decay. " Then the 
pope rejects among the evil consequences of the "revolution" of the sixteenth 
century (meaning, of course, the Information i the erroneous opinion that "no 
religion should be publicly professed [by the state]; nor ought one to be pre 
ferred to the rest; nor ought there to be any inquiry which of many is alone 
true; nor ought one to be specially favored, but to each alike equal rights ought 
to be assigned, provided only, that the social order incurs no injury from them." 
This is probably aimed at Italy and France, but implies also a condemnation 
of the separation of church and state as it exists in the United States. Further 
on, the pope approvingly refers to the Encyclical Jfiniri IV of Gregory XVI. 
(Aug. 1"), 1 *;>_>), which condemns the separation of church and state, and to the 
Svllabus of Pius IX., who "noted many false opinions and ordered them to be 
collected together in order that in so great a conflux of errors Catholics might 
have something which they might follow without stumbling." 

2 Thus, in IS-") -2, the Madiai family were imprisoned in Florence for holding 
prayer meetings and reading the Bible, and in 18o3, Matamoras, Carrasco and 
their friends were imprisoned and condemned to the galleys at Madrid for the 
same offense, and were only released after a powerful protest of an international 
deputation of the Evangelical Alliance. No public, worship except the Roman 
Catholic was tolerated in the city of Rome before LSTO. 


is an impossibility, and would l>e condemned bv intelligent 
and lilxTal Roman Catholics as a folly and a crime. 

.">. The I rototant theory and practice of persecution and 

(<i) The Lutheran Reformers and Churches. 

Luther wa-; the most advanced among the Reformers in tlie 
ideas of toleration and liberty. He elearlv saw the far-reaching 
etl ect of bis own protest against Koine, and during bis storm- 
and pressure-period, iVoin K>17 to l~)lM, he was a fearless 
champion of liberty. He- has left some of the noblest utterances 
against coercion in matters of conscience, which contain almost 
everv essential feature of the modern theory on the subject. lie 
draws a sharp line between the temporal power which is con 
fined to the body and worldly goods, and the spiritual govern 
ment which belongs to God. He says that "no one can command 
or ought to command the soul, except God, who alone can .-how 
it the way to heaven;" that "the thoughts and mind of man are 
known onlv to God ;" that "it is futile and impossible to com 
mand, or by force to compel any man s belief;" that "heresy is 
a spiritual tiling which no iron can hew down, no fire burn, no 
water drown;" that "belief is a free thing which cannot l>e 
enforced." 1 lie opj>oscd the doctrine of the Anabaptists with 
evcrv argument at his command, but disapproved the cruel per<e- 

cutioll to which they were subjected ill IVoteMatlt a< well as 

( atholic countries. " It is not right," he said in a book against 
them ( 1-VJX), "and I deeply regret that such wretched people 
.-hould In- so mi.-crablv murdered, burned, and cruelly put to 

1 >! lii-. tract, written in l-VJo, \ n \i;l/li,-fi,-r O /r/ <//.W/, inV v< il ninn ihr (!>h >r- 
mm trl.,,1,1;,, if In \V:il,-li X. W 17 . , -j)r, ially the M .-,-n,| part. r.,!. -|.M 
s<l<|. " l)rr S d n kann iiml anil ni>innn<l / , " i-"--" //( ihr //) \\ / zu 
I v/.-wn / -n Ilimmfl. !><t.< f:nnn <it"T k>in M> n.-r/i (Hun, *on<l>rn (}ntl nlliin. l)nntm 
in <l ii Sti.-lt.-n, <li>- <!>r S.,l,n X // -//;.// l>,ti;tf,-n. *H ju rl,t.< il-nn <iult,:t ]\ ,,rt 
ifiitlm I IIIK! uni/fti iiinii n \r> rd< n " I -l"io). A .f I .-Y fin Jrci \V>rk uni <li~n (il<mb n, il tzu 
in/in nirmnnil knnn zirinyn . . . /.<n (il-mlun knnn nml // innn nirmnnd 
zirin / -n (\ >~> *[.}. Hi- ju>ilv coiiiiiK-s tin- duty of olie<lit > n(*e taught in 
ll. in. I-"-: 1, ami 1 1V-1. li: i:;, to uvular :nattfr>, and <iualilu-s tin-in l>v 
Matt. I l!: Jl. 


death ; every one should be allowed to believe what he pleases. 
If lie believes wrongly, he will have punishment enough in the 
eternal fire of hell. Why should they be tortured in this life 
also?" If heretics were to be punished by death, the hangman 
would be the best (the most orthodox) theologian. "I eau in no 
way admit," he wrote to his friend Link in 1028, "that false 
teachers should be put to death: it is enough that they should be 
banished." 2 

To this extent, then, he favored punishment of heretics, but 
no further. He wanted them to be silenced or banished by the 
government. lie spent his violence in icords, in which he far 
outstripped friends and foes, and spared neither papists, nor 
Zwinglians, nor Anabaptists, nor even temporal princes like 
Henry VIII., Duke George of Saxony, and Duke Henry of 
Brunswick. 3 But his ads of intolerance are few. He refused 

1 Von tier Wiedertaufr, cm zirci Pfarrh/ rrn, written in Dec., 1527 or Jan., 1528, 
and addressed to two pastors in a Roman Catholic country (probably under the 
rule of Duke ( ieorge of Saxony). See \Va!ch X VII., 2C>44, and the Krl. Frnnkf. 
ed. xxvi., or of the Refonnations-historischcSchriften 1 1 1. (2d ed. 1SS5), p. 2>:>, from 
which I quote the whole passage: "Dock ixCs nicltt recltf, und />7 mir wuhrlirh leid, 
doss man solchc elen<le Lentc scjammerlich ermordet, verbrennct und yrcnlich umbrinut; 
man sollteja einenjeylichen la*en ylduben, vxis er icollt. (lldidtet er lutrccltt, -so hat er 
gnny Slrnfeii (in dent eiri /en Fair iii der llollen. Warumb will man sic. di nn auch 
noch zcitlich mnrtern, xnfcrnc sie allcni mi Crlauben irren, mid nicht (inch dancben 
wifruhrisch oiler xo/;x/ der 0< berkeit widerstrcben ? Lifbcr d ott, vie bald (W.s ycsche- 
hen, d<it* ciner irrc u ird und dem Ten/el in Strict; fallt t ! Mil der S -lirift and Got Its 
Wort ,W// man ihn v:e.hren und widerstehen; mil Fcncr v;ird mnn ireniij (tit.*richft n. > 

2 Ih-i fe. de Wette III., 347 sq.: "Quod qnnvi*, an lici-at nia<ji<tratiu orcidere 
pscudoprophetasf E<jo ad jndieinm sanyuinis tardn$ xnm, ctiam ^(bi meritum 
abnitilat .... Uidlo mndo poxsiiin fidmittere, fa I. MS doc.tores occidi : traits cxt cos 
rcl-gnri." lie gives as a reason that the law of the death penalty among the 
Jews and Papists was made a pretext for killing true prophets and saints. 

3 His course att-ick on Henry VIII., " by God s disfavor (or, disgrace, Vnynade) 
king of England," is well known. In his hook, Von wcltlichcr Obric/fccit, which 
is dedicated to his own prince, Duke John, he ventures the opinion that wise 
and pious rulers have from the beginning of the world been rare birds, and 
that princes are usuallv the greatest fools or worst boobies on earth (.s/c sind 
yemriniylich ilie //rotten Barren oder die iiryslcn I>nben aiif Erdcn}. Walch X., 
460 and 404. " Es sind >/nr vrniq Eursten, die man nicht fiir Narren vnd Ilnbcn 
halt. / )as T\acJit, sif, beweiscn sicfi auch also, und dcr ycmeinc J\Iu.nn wird vcr- 
sldndiy: Ibid., 4D4. 


tin- hand of fellow-hip to Xwingli, and would not have tolerated 
him at Wittenberg. \l< beg-jvd the elector, .John, to prevent a 
certain Han- Moli r from spreading Zwinglian opinions inCoburg. 
II- regretted the toleration of the /win-jlians in Switzerland 
after their defeat, which he uncharitahlv interpreted as a righteous 
judgment of ( Jod. 1 

*A f-w word- on liis views concerning the toleration of the 
Jew- who had to sillier everv indiguitv from ( hristians, as if thev 
were personal lv responsible lor the crime of the crucifixion. 
Luther was at lir-t in advance of public opinion. In l-VJ. J he 
protested against the cruel treatment of the Jews, as if they were 
d"ir~, and not human beings, and counseled kindness and charity 
a- tin- best mean- of converl ing them. I f the apostles, he savs, who 
wen- Jew-, had dealt with the heathen, as we heathen Christians 
deal with the Je\v-, no -heathen would ever have been converted, 
and I my-elf, if I were a Jew, would rather become anything 
else than a Chri-tian.- Hut in \~>[:} he wrote two violent books 
again-t the Jew-. 3 His intercourse with several Rabbi- filled him 
with disgust and indignation against their pride, obstinacy, and 
blasphemies. He came to the conclusion that it wa- useless to 
dispute with them and impossible to convert them. Moses could 
do nothing with Pharaoh by warnings, plagues and miracles, but 
had to let him drown in the Red Sea. The Jews would crueily 
their expected Messiah, if he ever -hoidd come, even worse than 

1 In :i letter to . \lhrecht <>f r.randenl.nrLr, :i. 1 "."._ . after he lu-anl .f /xvinuli * 
di-ath. I)"\\\-ttc I \ ., . !l . -.".">">. In the saiin- Irttrr lit- speaks of /uin-li - 
Halvatioii onlv pDliliMiiatically, as having jMissihly occurred in the last inoiiieiit ! 
I It* lavs then- the ^reatot >!re-s on the real presence as a fundamental artii le 
of faith. 

2 See his tnu t entitled /><<>.< ./.- K-- ( !t>-i.<tn.* n n yrbnrnfr Jti le wi, in the Krl. 
I- rkf. cd. I d. XIX.. p. r>-7". He say> that if I were a Jew and s illcred what 
the Jews had to Duller from popi-s, l>i>hops and monks, "xo u<ir< //< 7i<v >// .Via 
vnnl- n ili nn i in C/tri.- t. J)- itn ./ ti ifxti mil iJ> n JiJulrn grfuinHflt, a/x wirm .s 
llnnil?, i/ri / nirtit Mi iischni" (p. 17). 

3 \ n <l ii Jillfn nn l ifirt n Liiyii, NVittenb., lol. J, and \ r om Sffwi Ifamphnraa 
uwt mm <;.:*<-hl,-rhi Cftn.<ti t Wittenk, lOJ. J. In the Krl. Krkf. ed. lid. XXXII., 
99-274, and -J70-oOS. 


they crucified the Christian Messiah. They are a blind, hard, 
incorrigible race. 1 He went so far as to advise their expulsion 
from Christian lands, the prohibition of their books, and the 
burning of their synagogues and even their houses in which they 
blaspheme our Saviour and the IIolv Virgin. In the last of his ser 
mons, preached shortly before his death at Kisleben, where many 
Jews were allowed to trade, he concluded with a severe warning 
against the Jews as dangerous public enemies who ought not to 
be tolerated, but left the alternative of conversion or expulsion. 3 
Melanchthon, the mildest of the Reformers, went strange to 
say a step further than Luther, not during his lifetime, but 
eight years after his death, and expresslv sanctioned the execution 
of Servetus for blasphemy in the following astounding letter to 
Calvin, dated Oct. 14, 1054 : " Reverend sir and dearest brother: 
I have read your work in which you have lucidly refuted the 
horrible blasphemies of Servetus, and I thank the Son of God, 
who has been the arbiter ( t 3/ia,3su7rjs) of this your contest. The 
church, both now and in all generations, owes and will owe you 
a debt of gratitude. I entirely assent to your judgment. (Tao 
jndicio promts adsentior.) And T say, too, that your magistrates 
did right in that, after solemn trial, they put the blasphemer 
(hominem blasphemum) to death." 3 lie expressed here his 
deliberate conviction to which he adhered. Three years later, in 

1 " K m .//<(/ ndcr jiidisvh Ilcrz itt so stock-slein-eiscn-tciiffl-hart, dftss es mil 
kriwr HV/.sv zn hi-urr/i ii i.<!. . . . Summn, r.-* x/W jmi /i L\ ufi l, zur Jfiil/rn irr- 
dammt" (/. r. p. 1>7(>). lie had no hope of the future conversion of tlie Jews, 
which some justly derived from Horn. 11, but "St. l\udn* mciiu-l (jar rid eiii 
Anderc*" ( 277). 

2 " Vi-rnmlrtinnrf ^<kr die Jinlcn^ 1540, Erl. ed. TA V.. 1^0-lSS. lie concludes: 
" Wnllnt .s/c/i dn Judni zn unx bckchren und von i/tr<T Ldxtcruny and KYW sic uns 
son,if </cl}inn fvibrn, tt if/tdren, no u ir c.i ihnm <it rnc vvrgcbcn: u~n dher nirht, xo 
sollcn w!r x!c. nnch l i uns nicJit diildrn. nnrh Icidrn." Tliis reminds one of 
the way in which Priixv Uisinurck in the year issii proposed to deal with the 
Poles in Posen as enemies of Prussia and Germany: to buy them out, and 
expel them from the land of their birth. In several other respects, both 
favorable and unfavorable, that great statesman may be called the political 
Luther of the nineteenth century. 

3 t orpim H .j urtn. Optra Mel. VIII., 302. Comp. II. Tollin, Ph. Mclauchthon 


a warning against the rm>rs of Theolwild Thamnicr, he called 
the execution of Servetus "a pious and memorable example to 

all po-terity." We cannot tell what Luther might have said 
in tin- ca.-e had he livel at that time. It is good for his reputa 
tion that he was spared the trial. 

The other Lutheran Reformers agreed essential Iv with the 
leader.-. They conceded to the civil ruler the control over the 
religious as well as political opinions of their subjects. Martin 
IJucer went furthest in this direction and taught in his "Dia 
logues" (1 "). ]">) the right and the duty of Chri.-lian magistrates 
to reform the church, to forhid and punish popish idolatry, and 
all fal.-e religions, according to the full rio-or of the Mo.-aie law. 3 

In accordance with these views of the Lutheran Reformers the 
Roman Catholics in Lutheran countries were persecuted, not, 
indeed, hv shedding their blood as the blood of Protestants was 
sdicd in Roman Catholic countries, but by the confiscation of 
their church property, the prohibition of their wor.-hip, and, if 
it seemed, by exile. In the reorganization of the 
church in Kleetoral Saxony in lojs, under the direct ion of the 
Wittenberg Reformers, the popi.-h priests were deprived of their 
benefices, and even ob.-tinatc laymen were forced to .-ell their 
property and to leave their country. " For," said the Llector, 
"although it is not our intention to hind any one to what he is 
to believe and hold, yet will we, for the prevention of mis 
chievous tumult and other inconvenience s, stiller neither sect nor 
separation in our territorv. M 

IIIK! M. St-rrit. 1^1 m fjm !li,i -SI n<1i> . Berlin, ls"0 (10S unt^s). Tollin wrote 
several monographs mi Scrv.-ius in his vanon- relation-;. 

1 / ./ /.. IX.. ] > >: "Ih lit ri-i-n <t <i< n i-ci,. s/.s /. .// / ,/. Mi /i*! rut nx nut 
muni* / Kitii,,,- i, unit, i- /,i.s/ (l .i i//;.< I,!,!*!,!,, ,,,! ! mlnrxnx I- ilhnu D* /. s ,l>it 
.s /-re/.) .!(/" / /;, fii iui it iiniiinrii iili ii l oiitin iit ]n>xti-rit it< in >.riini>liun." 

- LntluT kn-\v only the .">erve!ns of I.".:)!, ami om-e refers to him in his 
TV-/ - / "//, , as a faiiatie who inasteiv.l tli-uloi, y ly fal-e pliiloM.pliy. See 
Tollin. I. ill, < r in,. I Si-wt, n-Tliii. 1"T" ( ! pau es). 

S.-e Tollin. li tlz i- * Ciif itnt;,> / / /./ // VII. !>> Triuit iti* Xi-mrUm*, 
in the "Stnlien un 1 Krltik.-n" f.>rl-7">: - ii.! M n-lt-n 1 Si-rn-l un>l M irtin 
Il itZ r, I .erlin, 1^ <( ; Hanin. f ,//,iV/ ini l llnfzir (ISuOI. jij>. 4* .is(|., M*, ami 
4 .o sij. ; also Jan-sen, V,-nd,. ./r.s dvutitrln it \ i>lk<-* t vol. 111., ISM. 

* " Lfcnn u iciiuid unterc Mcinung mcht ist, jemand *u vvrbiiultri, wcu er glaubcn 


The Protestant dissenters fared no better in Lutheran Saxony. 
The Philippists (Melanchthonians) or Crypto-Calvinists were 
outlawed, and all clergymen, professors and school teachers who 
would not subscribe the Formula of Concord, were deposed 
(1580). Dr. Caspar Peucer, Melanchthon s son-in-law, professor 
of medicine at Wittenberg and physician to the Elector Augustus 
of Saxony, was imprisoned for ten years (1576-1586) for no 
other crime than "Philippism" (/. c. Melanchthonianism), and 
Nicolas Crell, the chancellor of Saxony, was, after ten years 
confinement, beheaded at Dresden for favoring Crypto-Calvinism 
at home and supporting the Huguenots abroad, which was con 
strued as high treason (1601). * Since that time the name of 
Calvin was as much hated in Saxony as the name of the Pope 
and the Turk. 2 

In other Lutheran countries, Zwinglians and Calvinists fared 
no better. John a Lasco, the Reformer of Poland and minister 
of a Protestant congregation in London, when fleeing with his 
followers, including many women and children, from the perse 
cution of the bloody Mary, was not allowed a resting place at 
Copenhagen, or Rostock, or Liibcek, or Hamburg, because he 
could not accept the Lutheran doctrine of the real presence, and 
the poor fugitives were driven from port to port in cold winter, 
till at last they found a temporary home at Emdcn (1553). 3 

undhalten $oll, so wollen wir dork z tr Verhiltung schadlicher Aufruhrc find andcrer 
Unrichtigkcilen kcinc Scktcn noch Trennung in unseren Linden dnlden" Kostlin 
II., 2 .). What a difference between this restriction and the declaration of 
Frederick the Great, that in his dominions every body may be saved after his 
own fashion (n r trh seiner eiynvn J \iro)i}. 

1 Fr. Koch, I)r Vita Ca*pnr. Pexrrri Marburg, 1856. Richard, Dcr churflirstl. 
sdchx. Kan-Jer Dr. Xif. Krelt. Dresden, 1859, 2 vols. Ilenke, Kaspar Penccr 
und Nik. Krel/, Marburg, 1805. Calinich, Kampf nnd Untergang dcx Jlfdctnch- 
thonismus in Kursachsen, Leipzig, 18G6; Zwci sdchsische Kanzlcr, Chemnitz, 

2 The following lines were familiar daring the seventeenth century : 

" Gottcs Wort und Luther i Schrift 
Kind des Pttpst s und Cahini Gift." 

3 Hermann Dalton (of St. Petersburg), in his Johannes a Laxro (Gotha, 1S81), 
pp. 427-438, gives a graphic description of what he calls Laski s "martyrdom in 


In Scandinavia everjf religion except the Lutheran was for 
bidden on pain of confiscation and exile, and these laws were 
in force till the middle of the nineteenth century. Queen 
Christina lost her Swedish crown by her apostasy from Luther- 
an ism, which her father had so heroically defended in the Thirty 
Years War. 

(f>) The Swiss Reformers, though republicans, were not behind 
the Germans in intolerance against Romanists and heretics. 

Zwingli extended the hand of brotherhood to Luther, and 
hoped to meet even the nobler heathen in heaven, but had no 
mercy on the Anabaptists, who threatened to overthrow his work 
in Zurich. After trying in vain to convince them bv successive 
disputations, the magistrate under his control resorted to the cruel 
irony of drowning their leaders (six in all ) in the Limmat 
near the lake of Zurich (between 1.VJ7 and 1/i:-^). 1 

Zwingli counselled, at the risk of his own life, the forcible 
introduction of the Reformed religion into the territory of the 
Catholic Forest Cantons (1531) ; forgetting the warning of Christ 
to Peter, that they who take the sword shall perish by the sword." 

Calvin has, the misfortune rather than the guilt of pre-eminence 
for intolerance among the Reformers. He and Servetus are the 
best abused men of the sixteenth century ; and the depreciation 
of the good name of the one and the exculpation of the bad name 
of the other have been carried far beyond the limits of historic 
truth and justice. I>oth must be judged from the standpoint 
of the sixteenth, not of the nineteenth, century. 

Denmark and North (Jermanv." Calvin mined his indignant protest against 
this cruel treatment of his hrethren, hut in the same year Servetus was made 
to sutler death for heresy and hlasphemy under ( alvin s eye 

1 Ktillini. cr, Il-farmntinnfywbirhi.; \.,W2. ( <>mp. his \ un d.-r HW.T/IIII/T 
Urxprun i, et--., l~>i 0. I la . en -ach, A / -"/. n</- > >., 111.. .ViO s<|q. Kmil Iv. li, />* 
Ziirirtti-r Wn <l, rlimfcr znr HifnniKifioiixzril, Zurich, 1S84. Nitsi-he, (it sch. 
der \\"u<l> rtuufiT in tier Srftiri iz, Kinsiedelii, l^s."). 

8 The statue erected to his nieiiury at /urich, August 2.*)th, 1X^5. ri j>rescnls 
him as holding the IJihlt; in his ri^ ht hand and the sword with his left. Dr. 
Alex. Schwei/.er protested (as he informed iw) against the sword, and took 
no part in the festivities of the dedication of the monument. 


The fatal encounter of the champion of orthodoxy and the 
champion of heresy, men of equal age, rare genius, and fervent 
zeal for the restoration of Christianity, but direct antipodes in 
doctrine, spirit and aim, forms the most thrilling tragedy in the 
history of the Reformation. The contrast between the two is 
almost as great as that between Simon Peter and Simon Magus. 1 
Their contest will never lose its interest. The fires of the funeral 
pile which were kindled at Champel on the 27th of October, 
1553, are still burning and cast their lurid sparks into the 
nineteenth century. 

Leaving the historical details and the doctrinal aspect for 
another chapter, 2 w r e confine ourselves here to the bearing of the 
case on the question of toleration. 

Impartial history must condemn alike the intolerance of the 
victor and the error of the victim, but honor in both the strength 
of conviction. Calvin should have contented himself with banish 
ing his fugitive rival from the territory of Geneva, or allowing 
him. quietly to proceed on his contemplated journey to Italy, 
where he might have resumed his practice of medicine in which 
he excelled. But he sacrificed his future reputation to a mistaken 
sense of duty to the truth and the cause of the Reformation in 
Switzerland and his beloved France, where his followers were 
denounced and persecuted as heretics. He is responsible, on his 
own frank confession, for the arrest and trial of Servetus, and he 
fully assented to his condemnation and death " for heresy and blas 
phemy," except that he counselled the magistrate, though in vain, 
to mitigate the legal penalty by substituting the sword for the fire. 3 

1 ServetuR probably imagined bimsclf to represent the Apostle when he called 
Calvin "Simon Magus." lie did identify himself with the archangel Michael 
fighting against the dragon, i.e. the Pope of Rome, Apoc. 12 : 7. 

2 Together with the extensive literature. 

3 Servetus appeared on a Sunday morning, August 13th, 1553, in one of the 
churches at Geneva and was recognized by one of the worshippers, who at once 
informed Calvin of the fact, whereupon he was thrown into prison. " Nee sane 
dissimulo," says Calvin (Opera, vol. VIII., col. 461, ed. Baum, Reuss, etc.),"mea 
opera consilioque jure in carcerem fuisse conjectum." Beza, in his Vita Calv., reports 


But the punishment was in accordance with the mediaeval laws 
and wellnigh universal sentiment of Catholic and Protestant 
Christendom ; it was unconditionally counselled by lour Swiss 
magistrates which had been consulted before the execution 
(Zurich, Berne, Basel, and Schatf hausen), and was expressly 
approved by all the surviving reformers : Bulliuger, Farel, lk-/a, 
Peter Martyr, and (as we have already seen) even bv the mild 
and gentle Melauchthon. And strange to sav, Servetus himself 
held, in part at least, the theory under which he snfl ered : ibr he 
admitted that incorrigible obstinacy and malice deserved death, 1 
referring t< the case of Ananias and Sapphira; while schism and 
hereby should be punished onlv bv excommunication and exile. 

Nor should we overlook the peculiar aggravation of the case. 
We mav now put a more favorable construction on Servetus 
invstic and pantheistic or panchristic Unitarianism than his con 
temporaries, who seemed to have misunderstood him, friends as 
well as foes; but he was certainly a furious fanatic and radical 
heretic, and in the opinion of all the churches of his age a reck 
less blasphemer, aiming at the destruction of historic Christianity. 
He was thus judged from his first book (153 1), 2 as well as his 

the f:ict as providential that Servetus, "it ([icxl im ntfnidii*, Cult-inn Marjixtrfitinn 
admcmenir" was arrested. Servetus had previously applied for a safe-conduct 
fnmi Vienne to ( ieneva, hut Calvin refused it. and wrote to Karel, February 
IMth. I vt I: " Si IV/IT//, inmlft ml- nt m> <i uuctunlu.*, ririnn t jrirc nutnijuum po/wir." 
During the process he expressed the hope, in a letter to Karel (Auifust 2<Hh, 
1553), that Servetus mi^ht IK? condemned, to death, but that the sentence he 
executed in a milder form (O/>mi XI V., col. 51)0) : " Spero rapHale mltfin ft>re 
jiitlicinm, jrrntir r-rn (ttrnrit ilnn [iifimn] rnnitti rui>i<>." In the same letter he 
gives a sketch of the svstem of Servetus as teaching a pantheistic diffusion 
of the deity in wood, stone, and even in devils. 

1 " JIv rriim /(," he savs in the liTth of his letters to Calvin (Opfra VIII., 
7<Hi. "./ i/n>rt>- xiiiijil/rit,,- iliifiiinn." < :il\ in refer-- to this admission of Servetus 
(VIM., -l>2) and charges him with inconsistency. 

l Ih- Trinitnti* I lrrnrilniA Libri m-i>tnn. / r Mirhui lrm .Siriy/o, fi// <).s AVr-j* ub 
Arugonia Hixpanum. Anno M.1).X.\ .\I. Nophneof publication b ^iven in 
the copy before me, but it was printed at Magellan in the Alsace, a.s a p pears 
from the trial at (Jeneva. The lHK>k excited the greatest indignation in < H-co- 
lampadius and Hucer. Luther called it an awfully wicked lxKk (rt rt ijniulifk 
bos Buck). IJucer thought the author ou<;ht t> be torn to pieces. 


last (1553), 1 and escaped earlier death only by concealment, prac 
ticing medicine under a fictitious name and the protection of a 
Catholic archbishop. He had abused all trinitarian Christians, 
as tritheists and atheists ; he had denounced the orthodox doc 
trine of the Holy Trinity, as a dream of St. Auguslin, a fiction 
of popery, an invention of the devil, and a three-headed Cerberus. 2 
He had attacked with equal fury infant-baptism, as a detestable 
abomination, a killing of the Holy Spirit, and abolition of regen 
eration, an overthrow of the entire kingdom of Christ, and pro 
nounced a AVOC on all baptizers of infancy who close the kingdom 
of heaven against mankind. He had been previously condemned 
to the stake by the Roman Catholic tribunal of the inquisition, 
after a regular trial, in the archiepiscopal city of Vienne in 
France, partly on the ground of his letters to Calvin procured 
from Geneva, and burned in effigy with his last book after his 
escape. He then rushed blindly into the hands of Calvin, whom 
he denounced, during the trial, as a liar, a hypocrite, and a Simon 
Magus, with a view, apparently, to overthrow his power, in 
league with his enemies, the party of the Libertines, which had 
then the majority in the council of Geneva. 3 

Considering all these circumstances Calvin s conduct is not only 
explained, but even justified in part. He acted in harmony with 

1 Chrixtiinnwiii Restitnfio .... MDLTTI., secretly printed at Vienne in 
France, with his initials on the last page, M. S. V. (i.e.: ViUanovanus). 

2 Such blasphemy of the Trinity appeared to be blasphemy of the Deity itself. 
Hence I eza calls Servt-tus " ille same Triad ix, id ext omnis vcrc- Dfitatix host is, 
ail< uqne mount mm er omnibns quantumvis rancidis et por/entoris hceresibus conflatum." 
Call: Vita, ad a. 1553. lie charges his book with being "full of blasphemies." 
Servetus called Jesus "the Son of the eternal God," but obstinately refused to 
call him " the eternal Son of (rod," in other words, to admit his eternal 

3 "The year 1553," says ?>e/.a in Calrini Vita, ad a. 1553, "by the impatience 
and malice of the factious [the Libertines] was a year so full of trouble that 
not only the church, but the republic of Geneva, came within a hair s breadth 
of ruin. . . . All power had fallen into their hands, that nothing seemed to 
hinder them from attaining the ends for which they had so long been striving." 
Then he mentions the trial of Servetus as the other danger, which was aggra 
vated bv the first. 


the puMie law and orthodox sentiment of hi.s age, and should 
therefore not l>c condemned more than his contemporaries, who 
wotdd have done the same in his portion. 1 

I Jut all the humane sentiments are shocked a^ain by the atnx-ity 
of the execution ; while sympathy is roused for the unfortunate 
suli erer who died true to his conviction, reconciled to his enemies, 
and witli the repeated prayer in the mid>t of the flames : " Jesus, 
thoii &JI1 of the eternal God, have mercy upon me !" 

1 II. Tollin. a Reformed clergyman of Magdeburg, be most enthusiastic and 
voluminous advocate of Siervetus ami his system, admits t bis, saying ( ( Imrnk- 
tirtnid M. .Si nvj .x-, Berlin, lS7(5, p. ) : " Sirht ( alrin i*t tckuld uj dn- That, 
Ktmlt-rn d> r rrutcxtantitinu* seiner Z<*it." Another apologist, Dardier ( in Lieh- 
lenbergcr s " Encyclopedic " XI. 581 ), says thv same: (".-/ /</ Kefonnf tout 
cntii!r> tjni >7 ro/> //// ." The famous Chri.stian philosopher, Samuel Tavlor 
Coleridge, went further. In one of his last utterances, in his Tal>le-Talk. sub 
Jan. . ?, ls:J4 (to which a friend directed my attention!, he expressed his views 
as follows; [ have known books written on tolerance, the proper title of 
which would be intolerant or intolerable books on tolerance. Should not a 
man who writes a U>ok expressly to inculcate tolerance learn to treat with 
respect, oral least with indulgence, articles of faith which tens of thousands 
ten times t<<ld of his fellow-subjects or his fellow -creatures believe with all 
their souls, nnd upon the truth of which they rest their tranquillity in this 
World, and their hopes of salvation in the next, those articles being at lea-t 
maintainable against hi.- arguments, and most certainly innocent in thetn- 
H-lves? Is it fitting to run Jesus Christ in a silly parallel with Socrates the 
Being whom thousand millions of intellectual creatures, of whom I am an 
humble unit, take to be their Redeemer, with an Athenian philosopher, of 
whom we should know nothing except through \\\- glorification in 1 lato ami 
Xenophon? And then to hitch L \TIMKK and SKKVKTCS together ! To U 
sun-, there was a stake and a tire in each ease, but where the rest of the resem 
blance is 1 cannot see. What ground is there for throwing the odium of Ser- 
vettis s death upon Calvin alone? Whv, the mild Mclanchthon wrote to 
Calvin, expiexslv to testifv his concurrence in the act, and no doubt he spoke 
the sense of the (Jerman Reformers; the Swiss churches a<lri.ii the punish 
ment in formal letters, and I rather think there are letters from the F.nglish 
divines, approving Calvin s conduct ! Before a man deals out the slang of the 
day alxnit the great leaders of the Reformation, he should learn to throw him 
self back to the age of the Reformation, when the two great parties in the 
church were eugerlv on the watch to fasten a charge- of heresy on the other. 
Ik-sides, if ever a poor fanatic thrust himself into the fire, it was Michael 
ScrvetiiH. He was a rabid enthusiast, and did everything lie could in the way 
of insult and rihaldrv to provoke the feeling of the Christian church. He 
called the Trinitv trirrnx munatruin et Cci bentm (jm-imlnni tri-jmrtitum, and soon." 


The enemies of Calvin raised, in anonymous and pseudonymous 
pamphlets, a loud protest against the new tribunal of popery and 
inquisition in Geneva, which had boasted to be an asylum of all 
the persecuted. The execution of Servetus was condemned by 
his anti-trinitariau sympathizers, especially the Italian refugees 
in Switzerland, and also by some orthodox Christians in Basel 
and elsewhere, who feared that it would afford a powerful argu 
ment to the Romanists for their persecution of Protestants. 

Calvin felt it necessary, therefore, to come out with a public 
defense of the death-penalty for heresy, in the spring of 1554. 1 
lie appealed to the Mosaic law against idolatry and blasphemy, 
to the expulsion of the profane traffickers from the temple-court 
(Matt. 21 : 12), and he tries to refute the arguments for tolera 
tion which were derived from the wise counsel of Gamaliel (Acts 
5 : 34), the parable of the tares among the wheat (Matt. 13: 29), 
and Christ s rebuke of Peter for drawing the sword (Matt. 26 : 52). 
The last argument he disposes of by making a distinction between 
private vengeance and public punishment. 

Beza also defended, with his usual ability, in a special treatise, 
the punishment of heretics, chiefly as a measure of self-defense 
of the state which had a right to give laws and a duty to protect 
religion. He derived the doctrine of toleration from scepticism 
and infidelity and called it a diabolical dogma. 2 

The burning of the body of Servetus did not destroy his soul. 
His blood was the fruitful seed of the doctrine of toleration and 
the Unitarian heresy, which assumed an organized form in the 
Socinian sect, and afterward spread in many orthodox churches, 
including Geneva. 

1 Defemio orthodox*? fidei de sacra trinitate contra prodigiosoK errores Michaelis 
Scrveti Hispani ubi ostcnditur lurreticos jure gladii coercendos esse. In Calvin s 
Opera, ed. Reuss, eto., vol. VI II. 483-644. Bullinger urged him to the task in a 
letter of December 12th, 1553 (Opera, XIV. 698) : "Vide, me Gilrine, ut diligenter 
et pie omnibus pits describas Servetum cum mo exitu, ut omncs abhorreant a bcstia." 

a De haeriticis a ciiili magistratu puniendis, ad versus Martini licllii (an unknown 
person ) farraginem et nworum academicorum sectam. Geneva (Olivu Rob. Ste- 
phani). 1554; second ed. 1592; French translation by Nic. Colladon, 1560. 
See Heppe s Beza, p. 38 sq. 


Fortunately the tragedy of 1503 was the last spectacle of burn 
ing a heretic in Switzerland, though several years later the Anti- 
trinitarian, Valentine Gentile, was beheaded in Berne (1566). 

(<) In France the Reformed church, being in the minority, was 
violently and systematically persecuted bv the civil rulers in 
league with the Roman church, and it is well for her that she 
never had a chance to retaliate. She is emphatically a church 
of martyrs. 

( /) The Reformed church in Holland, after passing through 
terrible trials and persecutions under Spanish rule, showed its in 
tolerance toward the Protestant Arminians who were defeated by 
the Synod of Port (1 61 U). Their pastors and teachers were deposed 
and banished. The Arminian controversy was, however, mixed 
up with polities ; the Calvinists were the national and popular 
party under the military lead of Prince Maurice; while the 
]M)litical leaders of Arminianism, John van Olden Barneveldt 
and Hugo Grotius, were suspected of disloyalty for concluding a 
truce with Spain (1 609), and condemned, the one to death, the 
other to perpetual banishment. With a change of administration 
the Arminians were allowed to return (1625), and disseminated, 
with a liberal theology, principles of religious toleration. 

1-. Religious Intolerance and Liberty in England and 

THE historv of the Reformation in England and Scotland is 
even more disfigured by acts of intolerance and persecution than 
that of the Continent, but resulted at last in greater gain fur 
religious freedom. The modern ideas of well regulated, consti 
tutional lil)crtv, both civil and religious, have grown chiefly on 
Knglirh soil. 

At tir-t it was a brittle between persecution and mere toleration, 
but toleration once legally xvured prepared the way for full 
religious liU-rty. 

All parties when persecuted, advocated lil>crtv of conscience, 
and all parties when in j>ower, exercised intolerance, but in differ- 


ent degrees. The Episcopalians before 1689 were less intolerant 
than the Romanists under Queen Mary ; the Presbyterians before 
1GGO were less intolerant than the Episcopalians; the Inde 
pendents less intolerant (in England) than the Presbyterians (but 
more intolerant in New England) ; the Baptists, Quakers, Soeiu- 
iaus and Unitarians consistently taught freedom of conscience, and 
were never tempted to exercise intolerance. Finally all became 
tolerant in consequence of a legal settlement in 1689, but even 
that was restricted by disabling clauses. The Romanists used fire 
and sword; the Episcopalians fines, prisons, pillories, nose-slit- 
tings, ear-croppings, and cheek-burnings ; the Presbyterians tried 
depositions and disabilities ; the Independents in New England 
exiled Roger Williams, the Baptist (1636), and hanged four 
Quakers (two men and two women, 1659, 1660 and 1661) in 
Boston, and nineteen witches in Salem (1692). But all these 
measures of repression proved as many failures and made perse 
cution more hateful and at last impossible. 

1. The first act of the English Reformation, under Henry 
VIII., was simply the substitution of a domestic for a foreign 
popery and tyranny ; and it was a change for the worse. No 
one was safe who dared to dissent from the creed of the despotic 
monarch who proclaimed himself "the supreme head of the 
Church of England." At his death (1547), the six bloody 
articles were still in force ; but they contained some of the chief 
dogmas of Romanism which he held in spite of his revolt 
against the pope. 

2. Under the brief reign of Edward VI. (1547-1553), the 
Reformation made decided progress, but Anabaptists were not 
tolerated ; two of them, who held some curious views on the 
incarnation, were burnt as obstinate heretics, Joan Bocher, com 
monly called Joan of Kent, May 2, 1550, and George van Pare, 
a Dutchman, April 0, 1551. The young king refused at first to 
sign the death-warrant of the woman, correctly thinking that the 
sentence was " a piece of cruelty too like that which they had 
condemned in papists ; " at last he yielded to Cranmer s authority, 


who argued with him from the law of Moses against blasphemy, 
but he put his hand to the warrant with tears in his eyes and 
charged the archbishop with the responsibility for the aet if it 
should be wrong. 

o. The reign of the bloody Queen Mary (1553 150S) was a 
fearful retaliation, but sealed the doom of poperv by the blood 
of Protestant martyrs, including the Reformers, Cranmer, Lati- 
mer, and Ridley, who were burnt in the market place at 

4. Queen Elizal>eth (15581603), by virtue of her office, as 
" Defender of the Faith, and supreme governor of the Church " 
in her dominions, j>crmanently established the Reformed religion, 
but to the exclusion of all dissent. Her penal code may have 
been a political necessity, as a protection against domestic treason 
and foreign invasion, but it aimed systematically at the annihila 
tion of both Popery and Puritanism. It acted most severely 
upon Roman Catholic priests, who could only save their lives by 
concealment or exile. Conformity to the Thirty-nine Articles 
and the Hook of Common Praver was rigidly enforced ; attend 
ance upon the Episcopal service was commanded, while the mass 
and every other kind of public worship were forbidden under 
severe penalties. The rack in the tower was freely employed 
against noblemen suspected of disloyalty to the queen-poj>e. 
The statute de hacrciicM comljiircndu! from the reign of Henry 
IV. (1401) remained in force, and two Anabaptists were burnt 
alive under Elizabeth, and two Arians under her successor. The 
statute was not formally abolished till 1<>77. Ireland was treated 
ecclesiastically as well as politically as a conquered province, and 
England is still suffering from that cruel polity, which nursed a 
hereditary hatred of the Catholic people against their Protestant 
rulers, and made the removal of the Irish grievances the most 
difficult problem of English statesmanship. 

POJMTV disappeared for a while from British soil, and the 
Spanish Armada was utterly defeated. Hut Puritanism, which 
fought in the front rank against the big poj>e at Rome, could not 


be defeated by the little popes at home. It broke out at last in 
opeii revolt against the tyranny of the Stuarts, and the cruelties 
of the Star Chamber and High-Commission Court, which were 
not far behind the Spanish Inquisition, and punished freedom 
of speech and of the press as a crime against society. 

5. Puritanism ruled England for about twenty years (1640 to 
1660), which form the most intensely earnest and excited period 
in her history. It saved the rights of the people against the 
oppression of their rulers, but it punished intolerance with intol 
erance, and fell into the opposite error of enforcing Puritan, in 
the place of Episcopal, uniformity, though with far less severity. 
The Long Parliament abolished the Episcopal hierarchy and 
liturgy (Sept. 10, 1642), expelled about two thousand royalist 
clergymen from their benefices, and executed on the block Arch 
bishop Laud (1644) and King Charles I. (1649), as traitors ; thus 
crowning them with the glory of martyrdom and preparing the 
way for the Restoration. Episcopalians now became champions 
of toleration, and Jeremy Taylor, the Shakespeare of the English 
pulpit, raised his eloquent voice for the Liberty of Prophesying 
(1647), which, however, he afterward recalled in part when he 
was made a bishop by Charles II. (166 1). 1 

The Westminster Assembly of Divines (1643-1652), which 
numbered one hundred and twenty-one divines and several lay- 
deputies and is one of the most important ecclesiastical meetings 
ever held, was intrusted by Parliament with the impossible task 
of framing a uniform creed, discipline and ritual for three king 
doms. The extraordinary religious commotion of the times gave 
rise to all sorts of religious opinions from the most rigid ortho 
doxy to deism and atheism, and called forth a lively pamphlet 
war on the subject of toleration, which became an apple of dis 
cord in the Assembly. Thomas Edwards, in his Gangntna 
(1645), enumerated, with uncritical exaggeration, no less than 
sixteen sects and one hundred and seventy-six miscellaneous 

1 Coleridge regards this revocation as the only blot on Taylor s character. 
His second wile was a natural daughter of Charles I. 


"errors, heresies and blasphemies," exclusive of poj>ery and 
deism. 1 

There were three theories on toleration, which may l>e l>est 
stated in the words of George Gillespie, one of the Scottish com 
missioners of the Assembly. 2 

(a) The theory of the " Papists who hold it to be not only no 
sin, but good service to Gcxl to extirpate by fire and sword all 
that are adversaries to. or opposers of, the Church and Catholic 
religion." Under this theory John I Ins and Jerome of Prague 
were burnt at the Council of Constance. Gillespie calls it, in 
the Preface, "the black devil of idolatry and tyranny." 

(!>} " The second opinion doth fall short as far as the former 
doth exceed : that is, that the magistrate ought not to inflict any 
punishment, nor put forth any coercive power upon heretics and 
sectaries, but on the contrary grant them liberty and toleration." 
This theory is called " the white devil of heresy and schism," and 
ascribed to the Donatists (?), Socinians, Arminians and Independ 
ents. But the chief advocate was Roger Williams, the Baptist, 
who became the founder of Rhode Island. 1 He went to the root 

1 For the extensive literature on the subject see the list of Dr. Dexter, TJic 
Congregational urn of the. laxl three hundred yearn ax seen in itx Literature (N. York, 
18X0), Appendix, pp. 4(>-S Tin-: H:msanl Knollys (Uaptist) Society has 
published, in 1.S40 at London, a series of Tract* on Liberty of Otntcicnft and 
Persecution, written from 1(514 KiGl. I mention onlv those which 1 have 
myself examine*! in the rich McAlpin Collection of the Union Theol. Semi 
nary, N. Ynrk. 

3 Wholesome. Severity reconciled irith Christian Liberty, or the true Resolution of a 
present (. untrorertic concerning liberty of Conscience. Here you have the question 
stated, the middle vat/ betveen I ojnxh tyrannic an>l Schematizing Lif>er(i/ approved, 
and al*o confirmed from Scripture, ami the. testimonies of Divines, yea, of uhole 

chifchf* \nd in conclusion a 1 ara-netick to the fire Apologist* for choosing 

Acconunoi lotion rnthi r than Toleration. London, 1645 (40 pages). I)exter (p. 56) 
awii^ns tin; pamphlet, which is anonymoiiH, to ( lillespie, and its sentiment* ajjrec 
with tlu^e he expressed in a sermon he preached before the House of Lords, 
Aiipwit 27, 104o. 

1 He wrote " The Woody Tencnt of /Vrwrw/i/wi," etc., 1044 (24* pp.), and " The 
Bloo<ly Tenent yet more Ittuxly" etc., IfJ.VJ ( .173 pp.). Amon the anonymous 
pamphlets on the same side, we mention The OimpoMionate Samaritans , Unbind 
ing the f onxrii-nee, and pouring oi/le into the uounds uhich have been made ttjxm the 
Separation, eU\, 1<44 (^-\ pp.). 


of the question, and demanded complete separation of politics 
from religion. Long before him, the Puritan Bishop Hooper, 
and Robert Browne, the renegade founder of Congregationalism, 
had taught the primitive Christian principle that the magistrates 
had no authority over the church and the conscience, but only 
over civil matters. Luther expressed the same view in 1523. 1 
(c) " The third opinion is that the magistrate may and ought 
to exercise his coercive power in suppressing and punishing here 
tics and sectaries less or more, according as the nature and degree 
of the error, schism, obstinacy, and danger of seducing others 
may require." For this theory Gillespie (motes Moses, St. 
Augustin, Calvin, Beza, Bullinger, Voetius, John Gerhard, and 
other Calvinistic and Lutheran divines. It was held by the 
Presbyterians in England and Scotland, including the Scottish 
commissioners in the Assembly, and vigorously advocated by Dr. 
Samuel Rutherford, Professor of Divinity in St. Andrews, 2 and 

1 Dr. Dexter asserts (p. 101) that "Robert Browne is entitled to the proud 
pre-eminence of having been the first writer clearly to state and defend in the 
English tongue the true and now accepted doctrine of the relation of the magis 
trate to the church," in his Treatise, of Reformation, published in 158*2. Comp. 
Dexter, p. 703 sq., and Append, p. 8. But this is an error. Bishop John 
Hooper of (Jloucester, who suflered martyrdom under Queen Mary (1555), says 
in one of his earliest treatises: "As touching the superior powers of the earth, 
it is well known to all that have readen and marked the Scripture that it 
appertaineth nothing unto their office to make any law to govern the conscience 
of their subjects in religion." Early Writings of Bishop Hooper, p. 280, quoted 
by Dr. Mitchell, The Westminster Assembly, p. 10, where may be found a still 
stronger passage in Latin to the same effect : " Profecto Cliristus non ignem, non 
carceres, non ytuczt/o, non violentiam, non bonorum confacationem, non reginece majes- 
ttitis terrorem media organa constituit quibus veritas rcrbi sui mundo promulgaretur ; 
sed miti <tc diligenti prcedicatione evangelii sui miinditm ab errore et idolohitria eon- 
verti prtrr.epit" Later Writing* of Bp. Hooper, p. 086. The same principle found 
expression among Mennonites and Anabaptists of the Reformation period, and 
may be traced back to the Apostolic and the Ante-Nicene period, when 
Christianity had no connection whatever with politics and secular government. 

2 He wrote A Free, Disputation against pretended Liberty of Conscience tending 
to resolve Doubts mured by Mr. John Goodwin, John Baptist, Dr. Jer. Taylor, the 
Belgick Armininn*, Socinians, and other authors contending for lawlcsse Liberty, or 
licentious Toleration of Sects and Heresies. London, 1649. 410 pages. He calls 
the advocates of toleration " Libertines." 


most zealously by Thomas Edwards, a Presbyterian minister 
iu London. 1 It had a strong basis in the national endorsement 
of the Sdeinn League and Covenant, and triumphed in the West 
minster Assembly. It may therefore lx> called the Presbyterian 
theory of the seventeenth century. But it was never put into 
practice by Presbyterians, at least not to the extent of physical 
violence, against heretics and schismatics either in Kn^land or 

The Westminster Confession of Faith, in its original shaj>o, 
declares, on the one hand, the i^reut principle 1 of religious liberty, 
that " (lod alone is Lord of the conscience," but also, on the 
other hand, that dangerous heretics " mav lawfully be called to 
account, and proceeded against bv the censures of the church, and 
by the jtoirer of the end mayuitrfite." And it assigns to the civil 
magistrate the power and duty to preserve "unity and peace in 
the church," to suppress "all blasphemies and heresies," to pre- 

The author of Reasons nrjoinut Independent Ctnvemmmt of Pitrtiruliir 
o/iti in.* : MX alto a</ain.i( the Tolerntio i of xuch church * to he erected in thi* kingdom. 
Presented to (He JIou*e <>J Common*. London, lb 4l (5 i pp.). Antnpoloijin ; or, a 
Full Aiwerto thf Ajwloyeticalt \nrration j Mr. (ioodirin, Mr. Xye, Mr. Si/mpton, 
Mr. Burroughs, Mr. Hrid /e, M-iidtcrH of the A*a<*ml)ly of Divins*. Whfrrin mnny 
of the controifrnifS of tfiw time* tire hnndle/l. Lxjmlon, KJ-KJ (2o!) pp.). The Fir At 
ami StrnH l J urt <>f < !nn<ir<rnn ; or, A Catalogue and Uixovery of mam/ of the 
Error.*, Jli rexie*, I$lnxphrTnit& <uid p> nnnon* I^raftices of tti: Serturic* nf (hi* /iw, 
tented and acted in fcn</l<nvl in thrxf. four l i*t year.*, etc. I.oinlon, l<>|f). The 
first part has 11 ., the second part ITS paires. They were followed ly The Third 
Port of (iiinifrn-nn ; or, A AV- und Jli /her Discovery of Error*, etc. L-nnlon, 
1640 ("JO. , pp.\ and l>v The f ,,.<tin i doirn nf the ln*1 nml *tronge.<t hold <>f Xitnn ; or, 
A Treatuif. nyainxt Toleration nwl prrtrudcd Liberty of Con*cienre. l/ondotl, 1047 
(ills pp.). "The ministers of Christ within the province of London," I>recm- 
ber 14, l 47, wnt "Ut a T -ttimoni/ of the Truth f Ji*u* Chri*t, and to -tr Solemn 
Lewrtie ami ( or, n-mt ; tin nlno Ayainut th> Error*, Hrrf*if and Bldxphtmics of (h<\if. 
time*, (ind th>- T>l, ration of them. Ix>ndon, l>4H (3S pp.). 

Dr. M Crie. in his /lnn/i/x of F.n<jli*h /V.W/y/Ti/ ( pp. ll0, I0l), says: "It 
admits of Ix-inj; shown that even the hypothetical intolerance of our Preahy- 
terian fathers differed essentially from Romish and Prela tic tyninny. . . In 
point of fact it never led them to |*ersecute, it never applied the rack to the 
fleah, or slaked its vengeance in hlcxxl or the maiming of the Udy." 

1 Chapter XX . 2, 4. The clause "and hy the jxiwer of the civil magistrate," 
is omitted in the American recension of the Westminster Confession. 


vent or reform " all corruptions and abuses in worship and dis 
cipline," and for this purpose " to call synods and be present at 
them." l 

6. The five Independent members of the Assembly under the lead 
of Dr. Goodwin protested against the power given to the civil 
magistrate and to synods. 2 The obnoxious clauses of the Confes 
sion were therefore omitted or changed in the Congregational 
recension called "the Savoy Declaration" (1658). 3 

But the toleration of the Independents, especially after they 
obtained the ascendancy under Cromwell s protectorate, differed 
very little from that of the Presbyterians. They were spoiled 
by success. 4 They excluded from their program Popery, Prelacy, 

1 Ch. XXIII., 3; comp. Ch. XXXL, 1, 2. These sections were changed and 
adapted to the separation of Church arid State by the united .Svnod of Phila 
delphia and New York which met at Philadelphia, May 28, 1787. See the 
comparative statement in Sehaff, Creeds of Christendom, vol. I., 807 sq. and III., 
607, 653 sq., 668 sq. The Presbyterian churches in Scotland, England and 
Ireland adhere to the original Confession, but with an express disavowal of 
persecuting sentiments. SchafF, I., 799 sq. 

2 Goodwin wrote several pamphlets in favor of toleration: An ApolngeticoM 
Narration, Humbly submitted to the Hon. Houses of Parliament (by Goodwin, Nye, 
Bridge, Simpson, and Burroughes). London, 1643 (32 pp.). 6eo//a^// or, thegrand 
imprudence of men running the hazard of fighting against God in suppressing any 
way, doctrine or practice concerning which they know not certainly whether it be from, 
Gud or no, 1644 (52 pp.). Innocence s Triumph, 1644 (64 pp.). Cretensis; or, a 
brief A nsu er to Mr. T. Edwards, his Gangrcena, 1646. Anapoloyesuites Antapolo- 
gias ; or, the Inexcusableness of that grand Accusation of the Brethren, called Anta- 
poloyia .... proving the utter insufficiency of the Antapologist for his great 
undertaking in behalf of the Presbyterian cause : with answers to his arguments or 
reasons (so caWd] for the support thereof .... especially in the point of Non-tolera 
tion .... Publ. by Author itie. London, 1646 (253 pp.) ; with a long Preface, 
dated " From my studie in Coleman street, July 17, 1646;" chiefly directed 
against Edwards. Hayiomastix ; or, the. Scourge of the Saints displayed in his 
colours of Ignorance and Blood, etc. London, 1646 (134 pp.). A Postscript or 
Appendix to a treatise intituled, Hagiomastix. London, 1646 (28 pp.). The 
Apologist condemned ; or, a Vindication of the Thirty Queries (with their author) 
concerning the power of the Civil Magistrate in Matters of Religion. London, 1653 
(32 pp.). Peace Protected and Discontent Disarmed, etc. London, 1654 (78 pp.). 
I.vyKfjr)Tiouo ; or, Dis-Satif action Satisfied. London, 1654 (24 pp.). 

8 SeeSchaff, vol. I., 829 sq. and III., 718-723. 

4 Dexter (p. 660) says : " During the short protectorate of that wonderful 
man, these lowly Independents came into relations so close with the ruling 


and Socinianism. Dr. Owen, their most distinguished divine, 
who preached bv coinniand a sermon before Parliament on the 
day after the execution of Charles I., entitled " Righteous Zeal 
encouraged by Divine Protection" (Jer. 15: 19, 20), and accepted 
the appointment as Dean of Christ Church and Vice-Chancellor 
of the University at Oxford, laid down no less than sixteen 
fundamentals as conditions of toleration. 1 He and Dr. Goodwin 
served on the Commission of the forty-three Triers which, under 
Cromwell s protectorate, took the place of the Westminster Assem 
bly. Cromwell himself, though the most liberal among the 
English rulers and the boldest protector of Protestantism abroad, 
limited toleration to Presbyterians, Independents, Haptists and 
Quakers, all of whom recognized the sacred Scriptures and the 
fundamental articles of Christianity ; but he had no toleration for 
Romanists and Episcopal Royalists, who endangered his reign 
and who were suspected of tolerating none but themselves. His 
grvat foreign secretary, John Milton, the most eloquent advocate 
of liberty in the English language, defended the execution of the 
king, and was intolerant to popery and prelacy. 

Had Cromwell reigned longer, the Triers and the Savoy Con 
ference which he reluctantly appointed, would probably have 
related the vain attempt of the Westminster Assembly to impose 
a uniform creed upon the nation, only with a little more liberal 
"accommodation " for orthodox dissenters (except " papists " and 
" prelati.-ts "). Their brethren in New England where they had 
full swav, established a Congregational theocracy which had no 
room even for Baptists and Quakers. 

7. Cromwell s reign wa.s a brief experiment. His son was 

religious power, that in onler to fill important places some of them were led 
to do violence to their noblest fundamentals." Several loading Baptists were 
guilty of the same inconHintency. 

See Alex. F. Mitchell, The Wtdmiruitfr Amrmhly, it* History and Stantlarda. 
London, 1883, pp. 203 and 493. "Owen, (Joodwin, Simpson, and Nye were 
chiefly concerm-d in drawing up n list of fundamental* which the Parliament 
of If>o4 wished to imj>ose on nil who claimed toleration. Neal Drives sixteen 
of them. The Journal of the House uf Commons speaks of twenty." 


incompetent to continue it. Puritanism had not won the heart 
of England, but prepared its own tomb by its excesses and 
blunders. Royalty and Episcopacy, which struck their roots deep 
in the past, were restored with the powerful aid of the Presby 
terians. And now followed a reaction in favor of political and 
ecclesiastical despotism, and public and private immorality, which 
for a time ruined all the good which Puritanism had done. 

Charles II., who "never said a foolish thing and never did a 
wise one," broke his solemn pledges and took the lead in intoler 
ance and licentiousness. The Act of Uniformity was re-enacted 
May 19, 1662, and went into operation on St. Bartholomew s 
Day, August 24, 1662, made hideous by the St. Bartholomew Mas 
sacre, nearly a hundred years before. "And now came in," says 
Baxter, one of the most moderate as well as most learned and 
pious of the Nonconformists, " the great inundation of calamities, 
which in many streams overwhelmed thousands of godly Chris 
tians, together with their pastors." All Puritan ministers were 
expelled from their livings and exposed to starvation, their 
assemblies forbidden, and absolute obedience to the king and 
conformity to episcopacy were enforced, even in Scotland. 
The faithful Presbyterians in that country (the Covenanters) 
were subjected by the royal dragonnades to all manner of indig 
nities and atrocities. " They were hunted " says an English 
historian * " like criminals over the mountains ; their ears were 
torn from their roots ; they were branded with hot irons ; their 
fingers were wrenched asunder by the thumbkins ; the bones of 
their legs were shattered in the boots ; women were scourged 
publicly through the streets ; multitudes were transported to the 
Burbudoes ; an infuriated soldiery was let loose upon them, and 
encouraged to exercise all their ingenuity in torturing them." 

The period of the Restoration is, perhaps, the most immoral 
and disgraceful in English history. But it led at last to the final 
overthrow of the treacherous and semi-popish dynasty of the 
Stuarts, and inaugurated a new era in the history of religious 

1 Lecky, Hittori/ of Rationalism in Europe, II., 48 (N. Y. ed.). 


lil>erty. Puritanism was not dead, but produced some of its best 
and most lasting works Milton s Paradise 7,o.s/, and Hun van s 
Pilgrim s Proyr&ts in this period of it.-i deepest humiliation and 

8. The act of TOLERATION under the reign of William and 
Marv, 1<J.S8, made an end to violent |>ersecutious in England. 
And vet it is far from what we now understand bv religious libertv. 
Toleration is negative, liberty po-itive; toleration i.- a favor, 
liberty a right ; toleration may be withdrawn l>y the power which 
grants it, lilx*rty is as inalienable as conscience itself; toleration 
is extended to what cannot be helped and what may be in itself 
objectionable, liberty is a priceless jrift of the Creator. 

The Toleration of 1G.SS was an accommodation to a limited 
number of Dissenters Presbyterian-, Independents, Uapti-ts 
and Quakers, who were allowed liberty of separate organization 
and public worship on condition of subscribing thirty-six out of the 
Thirty-Nine Articles of the Church of England. Roman Catho 
lics and Unitarians were excluded, and did not acquire toleration 
in England till the nineteenth centurv, the former bv the Act 
of Emancipation passed April !.*>, ISlil). Even now the Dis 
senters in England labor under minor disabilities and social dis 
advantages, which will continue as long as the government 
patroni/es an established church. Thev have to .-up port the 
establishment, in addition to their own denomination. Practi 
cally, however, there is more religious liberty in England than 
anywhere on the Continent, and as much as in the United 

!>. The last and mo-t important step in the progress of religious 
libertv was taken bv the r.\rn-:i> STATES of America in the pro 
vision of the Federal Constitution of 17S7, which excludes all 
religious tesN from the qualification- to any otlice or public tru-t, 
and still more clearly in the lir-t amendment to the Constitution 
(178!)), which enacts that " Congr*^ -hall make no law respect 
ing an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the live exercise 


Thus the United States government is by its own free act pre 
vented from ever establishing a state-church, and on the other 
hand it is bound to protect freedom of religion, not only as a 
matter of opinion, but also in its public exercise, as one of the 
inalienable rights of an American citizen, like the freedom of 
speech and of the press. History had taught the framers of the 
Constitution that persecution is useless as well as hateful, and 
that it has its root in the unholy alliance of religion with politics. 
Providence had made America a hospitable home for all fugitives 
from persecution, Puritans, Presbyterians, Huguenots, Baptists, 
Quakers, Reformed, Lutherans, Roman Catholics, etc. and fore 
ordained it for the largest development of civil and religious 
freedom consistent with order and the well-being of society. 
When the colonies, after a successful struggle for independence, 
coalesced into one nation they could not grant liberty to one 
church or sect without granting it to all. They were thus natur 
ally driven to this result. It was the inevitable destiny of America. 
And it involved no injustice or injury to any church or sect. 

The modern German empire forms in some measure a parallel. 
When it was formed in 1870 by the free action of the twenty or 
more German sovereignties, it had to take them in with their 
religion, and abstain from all religious and ecclesiastical legisla 
tion which might interfere with the religion of any separate state. 

The constitutional provision of the United States in regard to 
religion is the last outcome of the Reformation in its effect upon 
toleration and freedom, not foreseen or dreamed of by the Reform 
ers, but inevitably resulting from their revolt against papal 
tyranny. It has grown on Protestant soil with the hearty sup 
port of all sects and parties. It cuts the chief root of papal and 
any other persecution, and makes it legally impossible. It 
separates church and state, and thus prevents the civil punish 
ment of heresy as a crime against the state. It renders to Crcsar 
the things that are Gesar s, and renders to God the things that 
are God s. It mark s a new epoch in the history of legislation 
and civilization. It is the American contribution to church his- 


tory. No part of the federal constitution is so generally accepted 
and so heartily approved as that which guarantees religious 
libertv, the most sacred and most important of all liberties. Jt 
is regarded almost as an axiom which needs no argument. 

Religious libertv has thus far been i ullv justified bv its effects. 
It has stimulated the fullest development of the voluntarv prin 
ciple. The various Christian churches can live in peace and 
harmony together, and are fullv able to support and to govern 
themselves without the aid of the secular power. This has been 
proven bv the experience of a centurv, and this experience is the 
strongest argument in favor of tin- separation of church and 
state. Christianity llourishes best without a stale-church. 

The separation, however, is peaceful, not hostile, as it was in 
the Ante-Nicene age, when the pagan state persecuted the church. 
Nor is it a separation of the nation from Christianity. The 
government is bound to protect all forms of Christianity with its 
day of rest, its churches, its educational and charitable institu 
tions. 1 Kven invligion and infidelity are tolerated within the 
limits of the law of self-preservation. Religious liberty mav, 
of course, be abused like aiiv other libertv. It has its necessarv 
boundary in the liberty of others and the essential interests of 
Society. The United States government would not tolerate, much 
less, protect, a religion which requires human sacrifices, or sanc 
tions licentious rites, or polygamy, or any other institution incon 
sistent with the laws and custom- of the land, and subversive of 
the foundation of the state and the order of ( hri-tian ci\ ili/.atioti. 
Hence the recent prohibition of polvgamy in the Territories, and 
the unwillingness of Congress to admit I tah into the family of 
States unless polygamy is alxilished bv the Mormons. The 
majority of the population decides the religion of a country, and, 
judged bv \\n< teM, the American people are as Christian a- aiiv 
other on earth, onlv in a broader sense which recognizes all forms 

1 The government oven indirectly supports it in part hy exempt int; church 
buildings, hospitals, colleges and theological seminaries from public taxa 
tion, and l.y appointing chaplains fi.r tin- army and navy and fur Congress, 
in deference to ihe Christian sentiment of the people. 


of Christianity. While Jews and infidels are not excluded from 
the enjoyment of any civil or political right on account of their 
religion or ii-religion, they cannot alter the essentially Christian 
character of the sentiments, habits and institutions of the 

There are three important institutions in which church and 
state touch each other even in the United States, and where a 
collision of interests may take place: education in the public 
schools, marriage, and Sunday as a day of civil and sacred rest. 
The Roman Catholics are opposed to public schools unless they 
can teach in them their religion which allows no compromise with 
any other; the Mormons are opposed to monogamy, which is the 
law of the land and the basis of the Christian family; the Jews 
may demand the protection of their Sabbath on Saturday, while 
infidels want no Sabbath at all except perhaps for amusement 
and dissipation. But all these questions admit of a peaceful set 
tlement and equitable adjustment, without a relapse into the bar 
barous measures of persecution. 

The law of the United States is supreme in the Territories and 
the District of Columbia, but does not forbid any of the States to 
establish a particular church, or to continue a previous establish 
ment. The Colonies began with the European system of state- 
churchism, only in a milder form, and varying according to the 
preferences of the first settlers. In the New England Colonies 
except Rhode Island founded by the Baptist Roger Williams 
orthodox Congregationalism was the established church which 
all citizens were required to support ; in Virginia and the South 
ern States, as also in Xew York, the Episcopal Church was 
legally established and supported by the government. 1 P]ven those 

1 A Presbyterian minister, Francis Makemie, was arrested on a warrant of 
the Kpi<copal < Jovernor Cornhy of New York, Jan. 20, 1707, for preaching in 
a private house, without permission, and although he was ably defended in a 
pulilie trial and acquitted on the ground that he had heen licensed to preach 
under the Act of Toleration, he had to pay the costs of the prosecution as well 
as the d i fence to the large amount of 83 7s. b d. .See I5riggs, American Prea-, New York, 1S85, pp. 152-154. 


Colonies which were professedly founded on the basis of religious 
toleration, as Maryland and Pennsylvania, enacted afterwards 
disabling clauses against Roman Cat holies, Unitarians, Jews and 
iniidi ls. In Pennsylvania, tin. Quaker Colony of William 
IVnn. no one could hold otlirc, from ll> .o to 177"), without sub 
scribing a solemn declaration of belief in the orthodox doctrine 
of the Holy Trinity and condemning the Roman Catholic doc 
trine of transuhstantiation and the mass as idolatrous. 1 

The LTi eat revolution of legislation began in the Colony of 
Virginia in 177<i, when Kpiscopacy was disestablished, and all 
other churches freed from their disabilities. 2 The change was 
brought about l>v the combined effort sot Thomas Je Her son ( the 
leading statesman of Virginia, and a firm believer in absolute 
religious freedom on the ground of philosophic neutrality), 
and of all dissenting denominations, especially the Presbyterians, 
15apti-t> and Quaker-. The other Colonies <r States gradually 
followed the example, and now there i- no State in which religious 
freedom i> not fully iveogni/<-d and protected. 

1 he example of the I nited States exerts a silent, but steady 
and mighty influence upon Knropc in raising the idea of mere 
toleration to the higher plane of freedom, in emancipating religion 
from the control of civil government, and in proving the advan- 

Tonip. I>r. < harle- .!. Stille, 7iV//V/i //x 7V.-V.< in rroi inrittl Penrunjlranin. A 
pii^T rxt l //"!< tlif IH.-I. Si i,-. ,,f r,,,ii i.. N-.v. ., ISSf). I hilada., Issi ,. "S pp. 
" It i- lianl t<> U-lifVc," he MIV-. p. ">7 , " that a man like Franklin, for instance, 
would at any time liav- appiMVc 1 .f n-li^imis t-sts for oflicr ; y-t l- ranklin s 
nanu- i- attache 1 ovi-r an-1 over aL-ain in the (Jnalitication I .o- ks to the I >eelara- 
tion of I- aith, \vhi. h he was fo|ve<| Id make \\hen he entered upon the duties 
of the various oihYes which he lu-M. !!< inn^t liave iu-eii litcrallv forced t<> 
t ike sticli a test; for we lind him on the first opportunity, \\lirn the p-ople of 
this commonwealth determined to declare their ind pendence alike of the I enn 
familv and of the < rown of i rcat Ilrit.iin, r-iisini; his voic- against the impo>i- 
t nm of sucli tests a-< had !>cen taken durint; the 1 rovineial peri<nl. Franklin 
was the prc-ident and the ruling spii it "f the convention which framed the 
State Constitution of 177o, and to hi> inlluence has generally heen :^ ril.e.l 
the very mild form of test which l>v that iiiHtriunent wa.s sul>atituted tor the 
old one." 

2 Tli" act of 177 . uas comph-tcd l>y an act of October, ll^~>. Sec llciiinu , 
Collection <>J tltt LHWH of \ ir<jini, vol. Xll. tvl. 


tages of the primitive practice of ecclesiastical self-support and 

The best legal remedy against persecution and the best guar 
antee of religious freedom is a peaceful separation of church and 
state ; the best moral remedy and guarantee is a liberal culture, 
a comprehensive view of the many-sidedness of truth, a profound 
regard for the sacredness of conscientious conviction, and a broad 
and deep Christian love as described by the Apostle Paul. 

13. Chronological Limits. 

The Reformation period begins with Luther s Theses, A. D. 
1517, and ends with the Peace of Westphalia, A. D. 1048. The 
last event brought to a close the terrible Thirty Years War and 
secured a legal existence to the Protestant faith (the Lutheran 
and Reformed Confession) throughout Germany. 

The year 1648 marks also an important epoch in the history 
of English and Scotch Protestantism, namely, the ratification by 
the Long Parliament of the doctrinal standards of the West 
minster Assembly of Divines (1643 to 1652), which are still in 
use among the Presbyterian Churches in England, Scotland, Ire 
land and the United States. 

Within this period of one hundred and thirty-one years there 
arc several minor epochs, and the dates vary in different 

The German Reformation, which is essentially Lutheran, 
divides itself naturally into four sub-periods : 1. From 1517 to 
the Augsburg Diet and Augsburg Confession, 1530. 2. From 
1 530 to the so-called " Peace of Augsburg," 1 555. 3. From 1 555 
to the "Formula of Concord," 1577, which completed the Luth 
eran system of doctrine, or 1580 (when the "Bool: of Concord" 
was published and enforced). 4. From 1580 to the conclusion 
of the Thirty Years War, 1648. 

The Scandinavian Reformation followed closely in the path 
of the Lutheran Reformation of Germany, and extends, likewise, 
to the Thirty Years War, in which Gustavus Adolphus, of 


Sweden, took a leading part as defender of Protestantism. Tlic 
Refurmatiou triumphed in Sweden in 15127, in Denmark and 
Norway in 15o7. 

The Swiss Reformation was begun hv Zwingli and completed 
by Calvin, and is accordingly divided into two acts: 1. The 
Reformation of German Swit/erland to tin* death of Zwingli, 
1517 to 15. *!. 2. The Reformation of French Swit/crland to the 
deatii of Calvin, 15i> 4, or we may >ay. to the death of I M -/a, 1G05. 

The introduction of the Reformed church into Germany, 
especially the Palatinate, falls within the second period. 

In the >tormy history of French Protestantism, the vears 1550, 
1598 and 1US5, mark a> many epochs. In 1550, the first national 
synod was held in Paris and gave the Reformed congregations a 
compact organization bv the adoption of the Galilean Confession 
and the Presbyterian form of government. In 150-S, the 
Reformed church secured a leiral existence and a limited measure 
of freedom hv the Fdict of Nantes-, which King Henry IV. pave 
to his former fellow-religionists. Put his bigoted grandson, 
Louis X I V., revoked the edict in HJS5. Since that time the 
French Reformed church continued like a burning bush in the 
desert; while thousands of her M>IIS reluctantlv left their native 
land, and contributed, lv their >kill, industry ami pietv, to the 
prosperity of Switzerland, Holland, Germany, England, and North 

The Reformation in Holland includes the heroic war of 
emancipation from the Spanish voke and passed through the 
bloody bath of martyrdom, until after unspeakable sufferings 
under Charles V. and Philip I I., the I trecht I nion of the seven 
Northern Provinces (formed in 1570). was reluctantly acknow 
ledged by Spain in HIOO. Then followed the internal theologi 
cal war between Arminianism and ( alvinism, which ended in the 
victory of the latter at the National Svnod of Dort, 1(>10. 

The progressive stag s of the Fn-jli-h Reformation, which 
followed a course of its own, wen 1 influenced by the changing 
policy of tin- ruler.-, and are marked by the reigns of Henry VIII., 


1527-1547; of Edward VI., 1547-1553; the papal reaction 
and period of Protestant martyrdom under Queen Mary, 1553- 
1558; the re-establish meut of Protestantism under Queen Eliza 
beth, 1558-1603. Then began the second Reformation, which 
was carried on by the people against their rulers. It was the 
struggle between Puritanism and the semi-popery of the Stuart 
dynasty. Puritanism achieved a temporary triumph, deposed 
and executed Charles I. and Archbishop Laud; but Puritanism 
as a national political power died with Cromwell, and in 1GGO 
Episcopacy and the Prayer Book were restored under Charles 
II., till another revolution under William and Mary in 1G88 
made an end to the treacherous rule of the Stuarts and gave 
toleration to the Dissenters, who hereafter organized themselves 
in separate denominations, and represent the left wing of English 

The Reformation in Scotland, under the lead of John Ivnox 
(1505-1572), the Luther of the North, completed its first act in 
1567 with the legal recognition and establishment by the Scotch 
Parliament. The second act was a struggle with the papal 
reaction under Queen Mary of Scots, till 1590. The third act 
may be called the period of anti-Prelacy and union with English 
Puritanism, and ended in the final triumph of Presbyterianism 
in 1090. Since that time, the question of patronage and the 
relation of church and state have been the chief topics of agita 
tion and irritation in the Church of Scotland and gave rise to a 
number of secessions ; while the Westminster standards of faith 
and discipline have not undergone any essential alteration. 

The Reformed faith secured a partial success and toleration in 
Poland, Hungary, Transylvania, Bohemia and Moravia, but 
suffered severely by the Jesuitical reaction, especially in Bohemia. 
In Italy and Spain the Reformation was completely suppressed; 
and it is only since the overthrow of the temporal rule of the 
Pope in 1871, that Protestants are allowed to hold public worship 
in Rome and to build churches or chapels. 


1 4. General Literature on the Reformation. 

I. On the Protestant side: (1) The works of tlie REFORMERS, especially 
Lt. THKii, MKI.ANVHTHON, /wisiii.i, CAI.VIN, CKANMKK, KNUX. They will 
be quoted in the < hapters relating to their hi-tory. 

( 2, t Contemporary Historians: Jon. SI.KIDAN (Prof, of law in Rtraashurg, 
d. 1 ")"> )): 1)?. St idi HI l,fjt<nu.< ft Rt ipubliccK (\irnlo 1*. ( >rs(trc coinmtnlnrii. 
Lihri XXVI. Ar-eiit-.r. l;VVi iol., hest cd. l.y Am Knde, Fraiic-if. ad M. 178 )- 
>(>,:> vols. Fnul. transl. l>y I ohun, London, l(j> .i, i> vols. f 1. French transl. 
with the notes of Le ( ourayer, 17 )7. Embraces the (ierinan and Swist- 

The .l;i i i/ -.s R- formntinnii of SI-ALATIN, and the I list or in Rffonnationis of 
FK. MY< >. rt-feroiily to (he Lutheran Reformation. So. also. Lo^< in.i: < 

Vallialile cn|!ee(i(iu of documents. . I vols. See lielou $ !">. 

II. Riiinaii Catlidli.-: (!) (Ulicial .lociiments. l.,n,,ix X . / . M. ll><, 
ed. liy ( ardinal IIi;i:. I.M:> rin;i: umler tlie auspices of Pope L.-o XIII.. from 
ihe Vatican archives. Frei!iur.i, r i. IJ. l^s-i MJ ( |.. lLM aeie. The first three parts 

eoillain :)^-J pa.u es to A. I). 1.11 f. M>. mnmnt-i lii-Jm-nHiti,,,, ,* I. nth, rmm < .r 
tabubiriin secrctiorifjH* X. .S //.>-, 1-VJ1 - 2~i. ed. Iy I KTRI S P.AI.AN, Ratishonnc, 1S84 
(5S1> pat^es). Contains the acts relating to the I >iet of Worms, with the report* 
of Aleander, the papal legate, and the letters of (lenient VII. from 1 ">li;>- 2o. 
It includes a document of 1">1."., heret fore unknown, which disproves the 
illegitimate l)irth of lem-nt VII. and represents him as the a >n of (riuliano 
de Medici an 1 his wife. Flu-eta. Mnnnni -ntu S-mi i AT/. Hixtoriam illustrun- 
tin, el. 1 V IiM.AN, vol. I. Oeniponte, Is^.", i-Js .t paces ). 

(2 1 Controversial writings: .lull. ] .< K (d. ]">ii;5): Centra Lwlilrntm, 15:50. 
2 Parts fol. Polemical treatis-s on the Primacv. Penance, the Ma>s, Pur- 
patorv, etc. Jo. ( ociii,.r.r.s canon of P.reslati. d. \"> 2) . G>mmrntaria de 
Arti.i ft Srn pti* Lnth> n <ib Ann>> Do,u. Iol 7 ml A. 1">-17 tllflit-T Cnnxfripta. 
Mofjunt. 1")! . fo!. ; P;ir. l">r.." ); C,,l,n. l- .r.s. L.\fR. Sfiut s (a learned Car 
thusian, d. at ( l^n-. l")7s : ( ),///! nl>iri\i.i rcrum in orbc yfstarum ab a. 1500- 
1504. C Ion. l. r >(;7. A^ain-t Sleidan. 

I. Protestant works. 

(1) The respective eelion* in the (Jeneral Church Histories of Srnin irKH 
(Kirchm if*rh. .// !>> It-fii-mnti-m, Leip/.ii, . 1S(I-|- PJ. K>\ Mi-nriM, 
GlF>KI.KU !V*\. III. A Mil . I. and II.. IslOand IsVJ; K,, P !. transl. N. Y. vols. 
IV. and V.. iStl Jand is.sih. li.vri: I .d. I\ . l^r,.",!. H XCKNIIACII iv-.l III., also 
Boparatelv puhl. -1th ed. 1S70; Kn^ I. t ran^l. hv Mi^s Eveline M(K>re, Fxlinhurph, 
1-H7X. _ vols. ; especially ^ood on the /winirlian Reformation I. hrietly 
treat eil in the compends of (irKKK-KK. NIKDNKK, HASI: (10th ed. Ih77), 
EBKAKD, UKU/OG (vol. III.), Krurz (IHh ed. 18S r >, vol. ID. 


All these works pay special attention to the Continental Reformation, but 
very little to that of England and Scotland. 

Neander comes down only to 1430; his lectures on modern church history 
(which I heard in 1840) were never published. Gieseler s work is most valu 
able for its literature down to 1852, and extracts from the sources, but needs an 
entire reconstruction, which is contemplated by Prof. Brieger of Marburg. 

(2) JEAN HENRI MERLE D AUBIGXK (usually miscalled I?Aubi<jne, which 
is simply an addition indicating the place of his ancestors, d. 1872): Ilistoire 
dc In reformation da 10. s&cle, Paris, 1835-7)3, 5 vols., 4th ed. 1801 sqq. ; and 
Ilistoire dc it reformation en Europe an temps dn Calrin, Par., 1863- 78, 8 vols. 
(including a posthumous vol.). Also in German by Runkel (Stuttgart, 1848 
sqq.), and especially in English (in several editions, some of them mutilated). 
Best Engl. ed. by Longman, Green & Co., London, 180") sqq.; lest Am. ed. by 
Carter, New York, 1870-7P, the first work in 5, the second in 8 vols. Merle s 
History, owing to its evangelical fervor, intense Protestantism and dramatic elo 
quence, has had an enormous circulation in England and America through 
means <-f the Tract Societies and private publishers. 

H. STEBBIXG : History of the Reformation* London, 1S3G, 2 vols. 
G. WAPDIXGTOX (Anglican, d. 1800): A Histori/ of the Jirformntinu on the 
Continent. London, 1841, 3 vols. (Only to the death of Luther, 1.VIO.) 

F. A. HOLZIIAUZEX: Drr Protestantismns nach seiner geschichtl. Entstchung, 
Be.griindunt/ und Forth ildung. Leipzig, 1840- 50, 3 vols. Comes down to the 
Westphalian Treat v. The author expresses his standpoint thus (III. XV.) : 
" Die christliche Kirehe ist Hirer Natnr naeh wenxcnllich Eine, und dcr Idrchliche 
Auflb sungs-process, irelcher dnrch die Reformation hcrbeigefilhrt warden ixt, 
kann keinen anderen Zweck haben, als cin neues hohercs positives Kirchenthum 

B. TER HAAR (of Utrecht) : Die Reformationsgeschichte in Schttderungen. Transl. 
from the Dutch by G Gross. Gotba, 5th ed. 1850, 2 vols. 

DAN. SCIIEXKEL (d. 1885) : Die Reformatoren tend die. Reformation. Wiesbaden, 

1856. Das Wesen des Protestantisms aus den Qucllcn des R> f. zcilaltcrs. 
Schaffhausen, 1802, 3 vols. 

CHARLES ILvRiwirK (Anglican, d. 1850): A History nf the Christian Church 
daring the Reformation. Cambridge and London, 1850. Third ed. revised 
by W. Stubbs (bishop of Chester), 1873. 

J. Tru.orii (Scotch Presbyt., d. 1880): Leadn-s of the Reformation: Luther, 
Calein, Latinier, Knot. Edinb., 1859 ; 3d ed. 1883. 

L. H AUSSER (d. 1807): Gesehiehte des Zeitalters der Reformation, 1517-1048. 
Ed. by Oncken, Berlin, 1808 (807 pages). Abridged Engl. transl. by Mrs. 
Sturge, N. Y., 1874. 

E. L. TIT. ITrxicE (d. 1872) : Neuere Kirclirngwh. Ed. by Dr. Gass, ITalle, 1874, 
2 vols. The first vol. treats of the Reformation. 

FR. SEEBOIIM : The Era of the Protestant Revolution. London and N. York, 1874. 


,7. A. WYI.IK: Ifistr>r>/ <>/ Proti xtantis n. London, 1^7~>-77. . vols. 
GKOIK.K P. rViiKi: ( Prof, of Church History in Yah- Coll.-, .-) : Tt i:<fnnn- 

tioii. New York. l s ~- >. A comprehensive work, dear, calm, judicial. 

with a useful hihlio^raphical Appendix (p. "> T -"> . 1 ). 

.1. M. LINIXAY il reshyt.): Th - Il f tnnittinn. Kdi nl >.,!*>:. . (A mere sketch. ) 
C HAi:i.i:s I KAI:I> (I liitariaii ) : Tin- HifoniKttinn in its r<l<tt ,n t .}[.,!, r,i 

77,. .;//,/ n lt l Kntm loln-. Hihhert Lectures. London. 1^:1: I d !.. 

!>>".. Very al>le. (Jcrman translation l>y F. Halver.scheid. Berlin. l^M. 
.Toiiv F. Hri:-T (Methol. IJMmp): Slun-t History <if tin- !!</,, motion. 

New York, !>^t (li . i pact s). 
Li DWKi KKI.I.I.K: !>!< ii> hirnifi<n\ >nl tlir liltt-n n Hrfannjiartcirn. Lcip/.., 

!><> (.",it; pa^cs). In .sympathy with tin- \Valdcnscs and Analiapt i>t>. 
Two serit-> of hiojjraplues of the HI-IFOKMKHS, hy a numl)erof(Ternmn schol 
ars, the Lutheran s.-rio in ^ vo!s.. KI!>T!cld, iSlil- T-"). an<l the Ud ornu d (< al- 
vinistic) scrit > in in KlinTl rld. l s ")7- ii:>. The Lutheran series was iniro- 
duce.l l.y Nit/.M h. the Kelormcd hy 1 1.-.-. iihach. The >everal hio-raphie> will 
IK? mentioned in the proper place*. 

(ii F,r the V i", -<il. l-i-tory of the world and the church during and after the 
peri<*l of the Kelorination. the worl.s of LKOI-OI.I) vox KAXKK ^1. !>) aie..f 
great importance, namelv : /-V//>7 -n invl \ < >l!;< r run Si ni urn)ni im 1<. uml 17. .Jnhrh 
(Berlin 1 X L 7. -1th el. enlarged 1 S 77^; (.truchirhtcn dfr nnnnniufhfn \tnrt yfrjiwiHsfhni 
Vulh-r r<m l-t .l4-lol4 iMd ed. lSS. r i); ])i,- ,-,/.<r/,,-;i /Yiy.x/,-, ih,;- Kircl,.- ,/ il.r 
Sld it im ]> >, inn! 17. Jnhrh. (I erlin, 8th ed. ls*.~>, 15 vols. Ln^l. trans. l>y Sarah 
Austin, I.ond. -1th ed. 1^ >7. .", vol<. ; / ,v///:o,-,,r/,. C.whirht,- im \(\. u>! 17. Jultrh. 
(Stuttgart. H ">_ . 4th ed. 1 ^77, Vi>N.) ; /. // 7 />///< < ;,:<rhirl,t,- rnnfhmlirh im 1 i. 
K. 17. ./.(/,/ ,. f-lth ed. 1s77. C, vols.; Kii /l. transl. puhl. hy the Clarendon 1 re- , 
and especially hi- clas-ieal /),/,/.-,/,, (!,. Wi/ </(/ im /> itnldT d>T R-Jnnnn inn 
(Uerlin. l^JJU- -l:;, f.tli e<l. l^O- SL , in (J vols.; tran-1. in part l-y S. Austin, 
181. )- -47, :? vols. i. I-Janke is a master of objective historio^rnphv from the 
Bonrces in artistic ^ronpin^ of the salient points, and is in religions and patriotic? 
Bvmpathv with the<ierman Reformation: while vet he does full justice to the 
Catholic church and the papacy as a LTeat power in the hi-tory of reliirion and 
civili/ation. In his s.Vh year lie h.-jan to dictate in manly vii;or a I liiversal 
Hist. ii-y down to the time of I-:m].e!-or Henry IV. and 1 op.- Cretin \ I I . , 
l^^l- s 1 ,. 7 \,,h. His iil>rary was lou^ht for the MethodiM 1 nivcrsity in 
Syracuse, N. Y. 

F r the general literature see HKNUV II.VI.I.AM: Iiitr>ithirti,,,> tn tit,- Lit.-ra- 
tur>- f I- n.-nj,,- i,, t/t> \ >/ i, ]i\tfi, ami 17//* (. ittnrii-x. London, H I J. etc. N 
York ed., lss(i ( i n .} V o| s . 

II. Korr.nn ( atholic works. 

(1) The respective -,.,-iions in the CJenerrd Church Histories of Mi ini r.R 
(d. ls; ,s, ( .,|. from lectures hy (lams. lu-. enshur^. ls;7-lx<iS, lU ols. ; the third 
Tol. treats of the Reformation), Al./oi; (10th ed. 2, 2 vols.; En-1. transl. hy 
Pahish and liyrne, Cincinnati, 1 -<74 -\>\., 3 vols.), KltAl s (2d e<l. ]** 2\. and 
Cardinal IIKIUF.NK/JTHER (third ed. l s s",i. C omp. also, in part, the Histories 
of the Council of Trent hv SAUI-I (d. IGUi . , and I ALLAVICIM (d. 1GC.7;. 


(2) TIIUANUS (DE THOU, a moderate Catholic, d. 1017) : Historiarum sui 
Temporis libri 138. Orleans (Geneva), 1(520 sqq., 5 vols. fol. and London, 
1733, 7 vols. fol.; French transl. London, 1734, 1G vols. 4to. Goes from 
1540 to 1007. 

Louis MAIMBOURG (Jesuit, d. at Paris, 1080): Ilistoire da Lutheranisme, Paris, 
1080; Histoiredu Calrinisme, 1082. Controversial, and inspired by partisan 
zeal; severely handled by R. Bayle in his Critique yeneralc dc I histoire du 
Calvinixme de M., Amsterd., 1084. 

Ep. BOSSUET (d. 1704): Ilistoirc de* variation* de* e ///*rs protestantes. Paris, 
1088, 2 vols. and later odd., also in his collected works, 1819 sqq. and 
1830 sqq. English transl., Dublin, 1829, 2 vols. German ed. bv Mayer, 
Munich, 1825, 4 vols. A work of great ability, but likewise polemical rather 
than historical. It converted Gibbon to Romanism, but left him at last a 
skeptic, like Bayle, who was, also, lirst a Protestant, then a Romanist for a 
short season. 

KASPAR RIFFEL : Kirchengesch. der neusten Zeit. Mainz, 1844- 47, 3 vols. 

MARTIN JOHN SPALDIXG (since 1804 Archbishop of Baltimore, d. 1872): 
History of t/ie Protect. Reformation in Germany and Switzerland, and in Kny- 
land, Ireland, Scotland, the Netherlands, France, and Northern llnronc. Louis 
ville, 1800 ; Stli ed., revised and enlarged. Baltimore, 1875, 2 vols. No 
Index. Against Merle d Aubigne". The Archbishop charges D Aubigne" 
(as he calls him) with being a bitter partisan, wholly unreliable as an 
historian," and says of his work that it is " little better than a romance," 
as he "omits more than half the facts, and either perverts or draws on his 
imagination lor the remainder." His own impartiality and reliableness 
as an historian may be estimated from the following judgments of the Re 
formers: "Luther, while under the influence of the Catholic Church, was 
probably a moderately good man; he was certainly a very bad one after 
he left its communion" (1.72). lien! quantum, mutat us ab ilh . " (77). 
"His violence often drove him to the very verge of insanity. . . . He oc 
casionally inflicted on Melanchthon personal chastisement (87). Spald- 
ing r | notes from Audin, his chief authority (being apparently quite ignorant 
of German): "Luther was possessed not by one, but by a whole troop of 
devils" (89). Zwingli (or Zuingle, as he calls him) lie charges with 
"downright paganism" (I. 175), and makes fun of his marriage and the 
marriages of the other Reformers, especially Bucer, who "became the 
husband of no less than three ladies in succession: and one of them had 
been already married three times all too, by a singular run of good luck, 
in the reformation line" (170). And this is all that we learn of the Re 
former of Strassburg. For Calvin the author seems to draw chiefly on the 
calumnies of Audin, as Audin drew on those of Bolscc. lie describes him 
as "all head and no heart"; "he crushed the liberties of the people in 
the name of liberty ;" "he combined the cruelty of Danton and Robespierre 
with the eloquence of Murat and Mirabeau, though he was much cooler, 
and therefore more -successful than any one of them all ; " " he was a very 


Nero." Spaldiim r i^ives credit to Bolsec s absurd stories of the monstrous 
crimes and horrible death of Calvin, so fully contradicted by his whole life 
and writi HITS. and the testimonies of his neare>t friends, as Be/.a, Knox. etc. 
(1. <>~~\ iJ^-l, o^o, ;>><, . ! .1 i. And >u< h a work bv a prelate of hi^ li eliar- 
aeter and po-ition si-ems to be the principal -oiiree from which American 
Ionian Catholics, draw their information of the Reformation and of 
Protestantism ! 

The historiro-polemiral works of Doi.LiXGER and .I.\NS.EX beloncr <o the 
biatorv of the G<.nnau Uefurmaliou and will be noticed in the next section. 


AUGSBURG, A.D. 1330. 


15. Literature of the Crerman Reformation. 



(1) The Works of the REFORMERS, especially LVTIIER and MKLA.XCHTHON. 
See \\ 17, 32. The reformatory writings of Luther, from 1517-1524, are in vol. 
XV. of Walch s ed., those from 1525-1537 in vol. XVI., those from 1538-1546 
in vol. XVII. See also the Krlangen ed., vols. 24-32 (issued separately in a 
second ed. 1883 sqq.), and tlie Weimar ed., vol. I. sqq. 

(2) Contemporary writers: 

G. STALATIN (Chaplain of Frederick the Wise and Superintendent in Alten- 
burg, d. 1545): Annalex Reformationis oder Jahrbiicher von dcr Reform. 
Lutlieri (to 1543). Ed. by Cyprian, Leipz., 1718. 

FRID. MYCONIUS (or Mekum, Superintendent at Gotha, d. 1540): Ilixtoria 
Rfformationis voru Jahr Chriati 1518-1542. Kd. by Cyprian, Leipzig, 1718. 

M. RATZEBKRGER (a physician, and friend of Luther, d. 155!) ) : Luther nnd seine 
/A: it. Ed. from MS. in Gotha by Neudcckcr, Jena, 185U (284 pp.). 

(.">) Documentary collections: 

V. E. LtiscHKii (d. 174 .)): Vu!I*fiin<Iir/e Reformat ions =Acta und Documenta (for 
the years 1517-TJ). Leipzig, 1720- 29, 3 vols. 

Cn. (i. NKCDKCKKR: Urkunden aus do- Reformationszeit, Cassel, 1836; Aden- 
Ktiit-kf. aus der Zcit dcr Reform., Niirnberg, 1838; Neue Eeitrdge, Leipzig, 

(. . E. FOKSTKMANN: ArcJiir. f. d. Gescli. dcr Iicfortn., Halle, 1831 s qq. ; Ncues 
Vrknndt nhnch, Hamburg, 1S42. 

Til. I>JUK<;KK: (Jiicllai und Forsclmnf/en zur Ccwhichtc dcr Reformation. 
Gotba, 1SS-1 s(j(j. (Tart I. Aicandcr und Lul/n r, 1521.) 





I. Protestant historians: 

Ll i>. A SK< KKNIM>KF ia statesman of thorough education and exemplary in 
tegrity, d. Itl Jl!): Onntn--n(tii-in. lii.<ii>ricnj< ft ap<tlu<jt ( de Latin ro.iu.-nno. 
Franeof. et Lips., WSS; Lipshe. liV.i-1. fol. Against tin- Jesuit Maimhour^. 

CHI:. A. SAI.K. (d. 17 N: r//.x///,,. //../< IIi*ti-ii- /< r Au>nr>ji-r r,</i/. .vW<,,, 
ifnun i:17-15Jii). Hall.-. IT: ."- :::.. : , vols. 

G. J. I I.AN, K (.1. Is-:::!): ;, *,/,;,-/,/, ,/< -,- /-;,,/.sM, .,. /, ,J, ,- } ,,<. 1,-rnn-ii n /,/ 

/< / liil luit J .s-c/- .s jn- itist. /..////,/ ;//-///N /i/ .s ;/(/ b . nifnln-ini l <1> r < n- 

conlienforinfl. Lfip/iti, L il <-il.. I7 .M-lS(K>, (5 vols. Iinportaiit f>r tin- doc 
trinal controversies in the I.nlh. ( Imrdi. Followed l>y the . >///>/// 
d>r ]<>( <n(. Tl,>l<i i< >-,,,, .!,,- ]\, -/,/,-. tnlii nfnrmd an hin!,i <l u Mittnlut 
(trl,tz>/,nt t n ,/<//// /. G.ittinizeu, ls: ,1. 1 vol. 

II. <i. KKKCSSLKK: />. M<n-t. Latin rx .\n<l<nk<n in Mihizi-n i!>xt Litnn*l>r~ 
xrln m^nn ii-n HUT!,- f n nl i</< r /, //</ m>**ni /t .s.v-///r;i. J/<7 -J7 Kiifif, rn nii l 
// Aiixi<-ltt ir///riiW:/N n,./ AV.s. //./.-//x ;/ Lnllu-rx /.fit. Leip/i-, I>ls. 
( liii lly interest inn for tin- iiMiin-roiis illustrations. 

Pun.. MAKHKINKCKI: (.1. l^-Jiic r;-.v. //;/// -/- ! nt-ti-f,, It>/onmn;nn. 
Uerlin. I d -d.. is:;i. 4 vols. One ! the hrxt hooks, written in I.uther- 
like popularity of style. 

K. HAI.KN": Di-uturhlnntln li(> r<ir. uml r<-/i</. \\-rhiiltniiMC iin R fininatioJiszeitalter. 
Kilan-en, IM1--J4. s.| M ., :> vols. 

ClI. <i. NKII>K< KKK : GV.-W<. </ < (( / r<ul .<t>intisnt>t.< in I)cut.n hlnn<l. Leip/.ig, 
1^44, H.J., J vols. 

C. HfXHi>iiAOEX (d. 1S73): Ibr <lrnt.<rltr r.-nh^nnt ^mnn. Frankfurt, IS 10, . M 
ed. lvN")0. Discusses the ^ eniu> ol the lielorination :LS well ;i> iiKxlern 
ehureli questions. 

II. lIi:i-I F. < ieniian lit -formed, d. lS7i^: (i>:^h. </<> <l,-ud<rftni rr<>/ -.--t<niti.*mu.< in 
<//< .I t/iri-H 1 .").">.") ,s.~>. M:irl iirir. l v " % _ s.|i|.. 4 vol>., J<1 ed.. lMi.") S ,|. Hi- 
wrote, also, a ninuU-r of other hooks on the Reformation, especially in 

liBLK l .\l IH(.\i : .s IIi.<tnr>i <>f tu<- li -funnntion, see ? 14. The iii^t division 
treats of the i ieniian Iielorinati"ii and is translated into (iennan hy 
linnhil, Stuttgart, ls4S-lSo|, :> voU., rvpnl l. hy the Ann Tract S>- 
cietv. Several Fn^li-h edition-, L.>n.!on and New York. 

WlI.Ml.I.M (iAS.^: <;>.-ht>-htc <l,r itrnt, .<l-inti.ich,-n l><j, until;. Herlin, I.>.")4- < >7, 4 

Ig. A. I oKNKK (d. 1SS4); C;,:<rhi<-hh /; ^r<>l,:^<n\(i>u hni Tlif"l<ii> ,/>"<;///. r." in 
Iti ttltrMnwI. Miinchen, 1M17. The lir-t I .ook. pp. 1-4 J. treats ,,f the 
Reformation i>eri<xl of (iermanvand Switzerland. l - !iiLdi>h translation, 
Blinhni-h, ls7I, 2 vis. 

ClI. I . KKAI-TH (d. 1^1>): / /,- C.,n >; /,V/Vi/r//on. I liiladelphia, 1^72. 

A dogmatico-lmtorica.1 vindication of Lntheranisin. 

9(5 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A. D. 1517 TO 1530. 

K. F. A. KAIIXIS: Die dculxclie Ill-formation. Leipzig, vol. I. 1872 (till 

1520, unfinished). 

W. MAriiKNiiisKCHKi:: XttulifuznrGrNcJi. d. Reformatinwizeit. Lcip/., 1873. 
FK. v. BKZOLIJ: der deutschen Reformation. Berlin, 188(3. 

The Klberfeld series of biographies of the Lutheran Reformers, with extracts 
from their writings, 1861-1x75. it begins with C. SCHMIDT S Melanchthon, and 
ends with KOSTLIN S Luther (the large work in 2 vols., ivvised 1883). 

Schriften des Vereins fur Reformationxgeschichtc. Halle, 1883 sijq. A series 
of nionograplis on special topics in the Reformation history, especially that of 
Germany, published by a Society formed in the year of the Luther celebration 
for the literary defence of Protestantism against Romanism. Kolde, Bennith, 
Holdewey, Bossert, Walt her, are among the contributors. The series includes 
also an essay on Wiclifby Buddensieg (1880), one on the Revocation of the 
Edict of Nantes by Theod. Schott (1885), and one on Ignatius of Loyola by E. 
Gothein (1885). 

Of secular histories of Germany during the Reformation period, oomp. 
especially, LEOPOLD VON RANKE: Deutsche Geseh. im Zeitalter der Reformation 
(6th ed., 1881, vols.), a most important work, see Z 14. Also, KAKL AD. 
MEN/ML (d. 1855): Neuere Geschichle der Deutschen wit der Reformation. Berlin, 
2d ed., 1854 sq., 6 vols. WOLFUAXU MKN/KL (d. 187:1) : Cwhicht der I)eu/.<chen, 
6th ed., 1872sq., 3 vols. L. STACKE: Deutsche Gesc/n chte. Bielefeld u. Leip 
zig, 1881, 2 vols. (Vol. II. by W. BOKIIM, pp. 37-182.) GOTTLOI; K<;KLHAAF 
(Dr. Phil., Prof, in the Karls-Gymnasium at Heilbronn): Deutsche Ceschichte 
im Zeitcilter der Reformation. Gekr dnte Preisschrift <les Allgemcinen Vereinsfiir 
Deutsche Literatur. Berlin, 1885. In the spirit of Ranke s great work on the 
same topic, with polemic reference to Janssen. It extends from 1517 to the 
Peace of Augsburg, 1555. (450 pages.) 

II. Roman Catholic historians. See the Lit. in 14. 

IGNATIUS DOKLI.INGER (Prof, of Ch. Hist, in Munich, since 1870 Old Catholic) . 
Die Reformation, Hire innere, Enhcicklunrf nnd ihre Wirknng im Umfange des 
Luther. Bekenntnisws. Regensburg, 1846- 48, 3 vols.; 2d ed., 1853. A 
learned collection of testimonies against the Reformation and its effects 
from contemporary apostates, humanists, and the Reformers themselves 
(Luther and Melanchthon ), and those of their followers who complain 
bitterly of the decay of morals and the dissensions in the Lutheran church. 
The author has, nevertheless, after he seceded from the Roman communion, 
passed a striking judgment in favor of Luther s greatness. 

KAKL WEUNEII : Geschichte der kathol. Theolayie in Deutechland. Mu nchen, 1866. 

Jon. JANS.SKN : Geschichte d^s deutschen Volkexseit <lem Aiisgang d Mittelalters, 
Freiliurg, i. B. 1876- 8fJ,5 vols. (down to Hi IS). This masterpiece of Ultra 
montane historiography is written with great learning and ability from a 
variety of sources (especially the archives of Frankfurt, Mainz, Trier, 
Zurich, and the Vatican), and soon passed through twelve editions. It 
called out able defences of the Reformation by Kawerau (five articles in 


Luthardt s * Zeitschrift fiir kirehliche Wissenschaft und kirchl. 

188 J and 1883), Kostlin, I^en/., Schwei/er, Ebrard, Baumgarten, and others, 

to whom Janssen calmly replied in An wine Kritikfr, Freiburg, i. B., tenth 

thousand, 1S8. 5 (227 pp.), and Kin zuvitr* Wort an tntinr AVi/i/rr, Kreib. 

i. R, twelfth thousand, 1883 (144 pp.). He disclaims all " tendency," and 

professes to aim only at the historical truth. Admitted, but his utand- 

poiiit is false, he views the main current of modern history as an 

apostasy and failure; while it is an onward ami progressive movement of 

Christianity under the guidance of Divine providence and the ever present 

spirit of its Founder. He reads history through the mirror of Vatican 

Romanism, and we need not wonder thai Pope IANJ XIII. has praised 

Jan.ssen as "a light of historic science and a man of profound learning. 1 

Janssen gives in each volume, in alphabetical order, very full lists of books 

and pamphlets, Catholic and Protestant, on the different departments of the 

history of Germany from the close of the fifteenth to the close of the sixteenth 

century. See vol. I. xxvii.-xliv. ; vol. II. xvii.-xxviii. ; vol. III. xxv.-xxxix.; 

vol. IV. xviii.-xxxi. ; vol. V. xxv.-xliii. 

For political history: FR. v. Brnmol.z : Ferdinand I. \Vien, 1832 sqq^ 
9 vols. llt HTEii: Ferdinand II. Schail hausen, 1850 Bqq. 

10. Germany and the Reformation. 

GERMANY invented the art of* printing and produced the 
Reformation. These are the two greatest levers of modern 
civilization. While other nations sent expeditions in quest of 
empires beyond the sea, the Germans, true to their genius of 
inwardness, descended into the depths of the human soul and 
brought to light new ideas and principles. Providence, it lias 
been said, gave to France the dominion of the land, to England 
the dominion of the sea, to Germany the dominion of the air. 
The air is the region of speculation, but also the necessary con 
dition of life on the land and the sea. 

The characteristic traits which Tacitus ascrilx s to the heathen 
Germans, contain already the germ of Protestantism. The love 
of personal freedom was as strong in them :is the love of authority 
was in the Roman race. They considered it unworthy of the 
gods to confine them within walls, or to represent them by images; 
they preferred an inward spiritual worship which communes 
directly with the Deity, to an outward worship which apjxiils to 
the senses through forms and ceremonies, and throws visible 


media between the finite and the infinite mind. They resisted 
the aggression of heathen Rome, and they refused to submit to 
Christian Rome when it was forced upon them by Charlemagne. 

But Christianity as a religion was congenial to their instincts. 
They were finally Christianized, and even thoroughly Romanized 
by Boniface and his disciples. Yet they never felt quite at home 
under the rule of the papacy. The mediaeval conflict of the 
emperor with the pope kept up a political antagonism against 
foreign rule; the mysticism of the thirteenth and fourteenth 
centuries nursed the love for a piety of less form and more heart, 
and undermined the prevailing mechanical legalism ; dissatisfac 
tion with the pope increased with his exactions and abuses, until 
at last, under the lead of a Saxon monk and priest, all the national 
forces combined against the anti-christian tyranny and shook it 
off forever. He carried with him the heart of Germany. No 
less than one hundred grievances against Roman misrule were 
brought before the Diet of Niirnberg in 1 522. 1 Erasmus says 
that when Luther published his Theses all the world applauded 
him. 2 It is not impossible that all Germany would have em 
braced the Reformation if its force had not been weakened and 
its progress arrested by excesses and internal dissensions, which 
gave mighty aid to the Romanist reaction. 

Next to Germany, little Switzerland, Holland, Scandinavia, 
England and Scotland, inhabited by kindred races, were most 
active in completing that great act of emancipation from popery 
and inaugurating an era of freedom and independence. 

Nationality has much to do with the type of Christianity. The 
Oriental church is identified with the Greek and Slavonic races, 
and was not affected by the Reformation of the sixteenth century; 
hence she is not directly committed for or against it, and is less 
hostile to evangelical Protestantism than to Romanism, although 

1 The famous "centum gravamina adversiis scdcm Romanam totumque ecclcsiasti- 
cum orditiem" 

a " Tot us mundm illi mftgno consen-m applauxit" In a letter of Dec. 12, 1524, 
to Duke George of Saxony who was opposed to the Reformation. 


She a^nt-s, in doctrine, discipline and worship, far more with the 
latter. The Roman Catholic Church retained her hold upon the 
Latin raws, which were at first superficially touched l>v the 
Reformation, hut reacted, and have ever since Ix-en vacillating 
between j>opcry and infidelity, or l>ctween despotism and revolu 
tion. Even the French, who under Henry IV. were on the verv 
verge of becoming Protestant, are as a nation more inclined to 
swing from Bosstiet to Voltaire than to Calvin; although they 
will always have a respectable minority of intelligent Protestants. 
The Celtic races are divided; the Welsh and Scotch l>ccame 
intensely Protestant, the Irish as intensely Romanist. The Teu 
tonic or Germanic nations produced the Reformation chiefly, but 
not exclusively ; for the French Calvin was the greatest theologian 
among the Reformers, and has exerted a stronger influence in 
shaping the doctrine and discipline of Protestantism outside of 
Germany than any of them. 

1 7. 77/r Luther Literature. 

The Luther literature is immense and has received large additions since 
188:3. The richest collections are in the Royal Library at Berlin (including 
Dr. Knaake s); in the public libraries of Dresden, Weimar, Wittenberg, 
Wolfenbiittel, Miinchcn; in America, in the Theol. Seminary at Hartford 
(Congregationalist), which purchased the Heck collection of over l. joo works, 
and in the Union Theol. Sem., New York, which has the oldest editions. 

For the Luther literature comp. .1. A. K.uuucii s: Ccntifolimn Lntlnrn- 
nuiit, Hamburg, 172S and 17:>(>, - Tarts: VO<;KI.: Itibliothccu bioyraphicti 
Luthcrnmt, Halle, 1*51. 145 pages; .Imix KDMANDS: ni<rtn<i Xotcs <> 
Lutnrr, IMiihula., lss:j; BKCK (publisher): liihliothccn I,nt/i ran<t, Nord- 
lingen, iss,", (is:, pages, with titles of 12:5*5 books, now at Hartford). Iss-i: 
Biltlin<jr<n>lne / / Lnthtr-Liti-rtitur <l< * ./. 1SX3, Frankf. a. M. lSS-1, enlargrd 
ed. 1HM7 (52 and 24 pages, incomplete). 


Oldest editions: Wittenberg, 12 (Jennan vols., 15:1>-*5 .>. and 7 Latin, 1545- 
58; Jena, S (ierman and -I Latin voK, 1555- 5 S <, with 2 stijiplements by 
Aurifaber, 15U- r,5; Alti-nlmrg. l<vols.. lf,<;i- (^: Leip/.ig, 22 vols., 1721- 4(i. 
fol. The three best editions are: 

(1) The Halle edition by .JoiiA.vv <ir:oi:; W.\L< H, Halle, 174<>-175(), in 
24 vols.. 4to. Kepublished with corrections and additions by DM. WAI.TIIKIJ, 
STi< KIIAKHT, KAIII.I:!:, etc., Colicordia College. St. Louis, ISSO s|<).. 25 vols. 

(2) The Krlangen-Frankfurted. by IM. IIMANN. IKMISCIM.U, and KNDEHS, 
etc., Erlangen, and Frankfurt a. M., 1*27 sijij., 2d ed.. lSi2-lSs;{. in] V( .h. 

100 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A. D. 1517 TO 1530. 

8vo. (not yet finished). German writings, 67 vols. ; Opera Latina, 25 vols. ; 
Com. in Ep. and Gal., 3 vols. ; Opera Latina varii arguments ad reformationis 
hist, pertinentia, 7 vols. The most important for our purpose are the Reformat- 
tions-historische Schriften (9 vols., second ed., 1883- 85), and the Briefwechsd (of 
which the first vol. appeared in 1884; 6 vols. are promised). 

(3) The Weimar edition (the fourth centennial memorial ed., patronized by 
the Emperor of Germany), by Drs. KNAAKE, KAWERAU, BKRTHEAU, and 
other Luther scholars, Weimar, 1883 sqq. This, when completed, will be the 
critical standard edition, It gives the works in chronological order and strict 
reproduction of the first prints, with the variations of later edd., even the 
antiquated and inconsistent spelling, which greatly embarrasses the reader not 
thoroughly familiar with German. The first volume contains Luther s writings 
from 1512-1518 ; the second (1884), the writings from 1518-1519; vols. III. and 
IV. (1885- G), the Commentaries on the Psalms; vol. V., the continuation of 
the reformation writings. . 

I have usually indicated, from which of these three editions the quotations 
are made. The last was used most as far as it goes, and is quoted as the 
" Weimar ed." 

The first collected ed. of Luther s German works appeared in 1539 with a 
preface, in which he expresses a wish that all his books might be forgotten and 
perish, and the Bible read more instead. (See Erl. Frkf. ed. I., pp. 1-G.) 

Selections of Luther s Works by PFIZER ( Frank f., 1837, sqq.) ; ZIMMERMANN 
(Frankf., 1846 sq.) ; OTTO VON GERLACH (Berlin, 1848, 10 vols., containing 
the Reformatorische Schriften). 

The Letters of LUTHER were separately edited by DE WETTE, Berlin, 1825, 
sqq., 5 vols. ; vol. VI. by J. C. SEIDEMANN, 1856 (716 pp., with an addition of 
Lutherbriefe, 1859) ; supplemented by C. A. H. BURKHARDT, Leipz., 1866 (524 
pp.) ; a revised ed. with comments by Dr. E. L. ENDERS (pastor at Oberrad 
near Frankfurt a. M.), 1884 sqq. (in the Erl. Frankf. ed.). The first volume 
contains the letters from 1507 to March, 1519. For selection see C. ALFRED 
HASP:: Lutherbriefe in Auswahl und Uebersetzung, Leipzig, 1867 (420 pages). 
TH. KOLDE: Anah da Lutherana, Briefe und Actenstiicke zur Geschichte Luther s. 
Gotha, 1883. Contains letters of Luther and to Luther, gathered with great 
industry from German and Swiss archives and libraries. 

Additional Works of Luther : 

The Table Talk of Luther is best edited by AURIFABER, 1566, etc. (reprinted 
in Walch s ed. vol. xxii.) ; by FORSTEMANN and BINDSEIL, Leipzig, 1844- 48, 
4 vols. (the German Table Talk); by BINDSEIL: Martini Lutheri Colloquia, 
Latina, etc., Lemgovia: et Detmolda3, 1863- 66, 3 vols. ; and in the Frankf. 
Erl. ed., vols. 57-62. Dr. CONU. CORDATUS: Taycbuch iiber Dr. Luther yefiihrt, 
1537, first edited by Dr. Wrampelmeyer, Halle, 1885, 521 pages. (English 
translations of Luther s Table Talk by HAZLITT, 1848; GIBB, 1883.) 

GEOR<J BUCHWALD : Andreas Poach s handschriftl. Sammlung ungedruckter Pre- 
digtcn I). Martin Luthers aus den Jahren 1528 bis 1546. Ann dem Originate 
zum erxten Mai herausgegeben. Leipzig, 1884, to embrace 3 vols. (Only the 


first half of the first vol., published 1SS4, and the first half of the third 
vol., 1885; verv few copies sold.) The MS. collection of Andreas Poach 
in the public library at Zwickau embraces nine volumes of Luther s ser 
mons from 1528-1540. They are based on stenographic reports of Dia- 
conus (ieorg Korer of Wittenberg (ordained by Luther 1525, d. at Halle, 
1557), who took full Latin notes of Luther s (ierman sermons, retaining, 
however, in strange medley a numl>er of German words and phrases. The 
whole collection embraces nearly b OO sermons. The reports of the sermons 
from 153l>- 35 and those of 1537 are wanting. Buehwald published first 
the sermons held at Coburg, 1530 (Zwickau, 1884, 41 pages). 

II. Bi.x.RAi iiiKs OF LITHKK: 

(1) Bv contemporaries, who may lie included in the sources. 

MELANCIITHOX wrote \ itn Liillvri, a brief but weighty sketch, 1540, often 
reprinted, translated into German bv Matthias Hitter, 1555, with Melanch- 
thon s account of Luther s death to the students in the lecture room, the 
funeral orations of Bugenhagen and Cruciger (157 pages) ; a new transl. 
bv Zimmermann, with preface by ( *..]. Planck, ( rottingen, 1813 ; ed. of the 
original in Vitif (jnutuor Rffornutlorum, Lutht*ri n Mclunchthonc^ Afeldnchthonis 
a C nmcrnrin, Zin it jlii a Mijcvnin, Oi/riiti <i I>< z<t, prefaced by Xeander, Ber 
lin, 1841. Ji sTt s JONAS ^ives an account of Luther s last sickness 
and death as an eye-witness, 1540. MATMKSICS (Luther s pupil and 
friend, d. 1501) preached seventeen sermons on Luther" > life, iirst pub 
lished 1505, and verv often since, though mostlv abridged, . /., an illus 
trated popular ed. with preface by ( <. 11. v. Schubert. Stuttgart. 1S40; 
jubilee edition, St. Louis and Dresden, 1S83. .Ion. CociiL.Krs. a Uomaii 
f ath. antagonist of Luther, wrote Cvinmenturia <1<: <ictix (.( sr/v y^/.s Mnr- 
tini Lutlicrl >, chronoyraphicd, <-.r online <t!> <t>m<> I)om. 1517 IIKIJHC 
ml (innuin 1540 (inclusive), jl<b -liti-r conx<:rii>t<i. Mayence, 1541) fol. 

(2) Later Biographies till Is75 (the best marked *) by 

*W.\i.( n Hri bis ed. of L. s Works, vol. XXIV. pp. 3-875); KKIL (4 parts in 
1 vol., Leip/.., 1704); SCIIIUKCKM (Leip/.., 1778); TKKRT ((iotha, "2 vols., 
1.H17); PKI/KK (Stuttgart, 183C,); STAXI; (with illustrations, Stultg., 
1H30); J.KKKL (Leipz., ixll. new ed. Klb.-rf.-ld, ls7h: *Mi:rKKK (Dres 
den, 184.".- 40, 3 vok with illustrations, abridged in 1 vol., 1850, 3d ed., 
1870, mostly in Luther s own words); *.JrKK<;Kxs (Leip/.., l840- 47, 
3 vols., reaching to 1517, very thorough, but unfinished); .1. M. Anux 
(Horn. Cath., Hint. <!> In r;, ilex murm/i-* >-t <!:< doctrinrx <lf M. Ltifli., Paris, 
1831), 7th ed., n-riif >/ rnrrifjfi; 1850, 3 vols. a storehouse of calumnies, 
also in (ierman and Knglishi; 1 *M. MICIIKLKT ( Mt imtirx d<- L. t <Vr/V.x /xir 

1 Au.lin wmt<- alsotlif Liven of dilvin.of H.-nry VIII.,ui).l f.f L-o X. (piiMili-d l.cfwpon 
MHn.| 1K47). with th- -inn.- Fr.-nrh vivm-ity :m<l I{iinin<- hn-tility : y-t. whiln 
be d.^s not iin I.Tt;n.i I.tith<T n- n I n.t.-tiint < l.ri-tiun iui-1 it reform. -r, IK- trlo to 
iJtUtice to him a a man nnd a genliif. H- suy-< (III., :w<i): " LuOur tat (c ijrand prfdi- 

102 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A. D. 1517 TO 1530. 

lui-wbne, traduits et mis en ordre, Paris, 1H35, also Brussels, 1845, 2 vols. ; 
the best biography in French; Eng. transl. by Hazlitt, London, 1S46, and 
by G. H. Smith, London and N. Y., 1840) ; l LEDDERHOSE (Karlsruh, 3d 
ed., 1883; French transl. of the first ed., Strassburg, 1837); GENTHK 
(Leipz., 1842, with seventeen steel engravings); WESTERM ANN (Halle, 
1845); WEYDMANN (Luther, ein Character und Spiegelbild fur unsere Zeit, 
Hamburg, 1850) ; B. SEARS (English, publ. by the Am. Sunday School 
Union, Philada., 1850, with special reference to the youth of L.) ; JGN. 
DCELLINGER (R. C., Luther, cine Skizze, Freiburg i. B., 1851) ; KCENIG and 
GELZER (with 48 fine illustrations, Ilamb. u. Gotha, 1851 ; Engl. ed. with 
transl. of the text by Archdeacon HARE and CATII. WINKWORTH, Lond. 
and N. Y., 1850) ; * JUL. HARE (Vindication of Luther against Ais English 
Assailants, first publ. as a note in his The Minion of the Comforter, London, 
1840, vol. II., 050-878, then separately, 2d ed., 1855, the best English 
appreciation of L.) ; II. WCER.SLEY (Life of Luther, London, 1850, 2 vols.) ; 
WILDENHAHN (Leipz., 1801); MUELLER (Niirnberg, 1807); HENKE 
(Luther it. Melmwhthon, Marlmrg, 1807) ; H. W. J. TIIIERSCH (Luther, 
Gustav Adolf -und Maximilian I. von Eayern, Nordlingen, 1809, pp. 3-OG) ; 
VILMAR (Luther, Melanchthon und Zwingli, Frank f. a. M., 1809) ; II. LA NO 
(Berlin, 1870, rationalistic); ACKERMANN (Jena, 1871); GASPAKIN 
(Luther et la reforme an, XVI e . stick, Paris, 1873); SOHAFF (a sketch in 
Appleton s " : Cyclopaedia," 1858, revised 1874) ; KIETSCHEL (Martin Luther 
rind Ignatius Louola, Wittenberg, 1879). 

(3) Recent Biographies, published since 1875, by 

* JUL. KfESTLix (Elberfeld, 1875, 2 vols., 2d ed. revised 1883; 3d ed. un 
changed; upon the whole the best German biography; also an abridged 
ed. 1 or popular use with (54 illustrations, 3d ed., 1883. English transl. 
of the small ed. by an anonymous writer with the authors sanction, 

cateur de la reforme. II eut pres^ue tous les dons de Tor at cur : une tnepuisable feeonditt de 
pensecs, une imagination auxsi prompted reccvoir qiCd produire ses impressions, une abondance 
et, une. Riiplcssc dc sti/le inexpritnables. Sn voix Halt clairc ct retentissante, son oeil brillant de 
Jlamine, sa tfte antique, sa poitrine lartjr, st*s mains d unc, rare beaut* , son (tcxte ample ct rich. 
. . . C Halt a la fois Rabelais et Montainne: Rabcfait arcc sa rrrrc drolatique de style, Mon* 
iai jni arrc sfs tonrnures f/ui burinoit ct cisi lcnt." The editor of the 7th ed., in Ins introduc 
tory notico (p. xviii.), says that those biographies of Audin havo given to the Reformation 
" le riiitp dc iiracc," and tluis finislu- d tlie work of Bo.ssuet s Variations ; but Protestantism 
still lives, even in Catholic and infidel Franee. 

1 Miehelet lets Luther tell his own story as far as possible, and compares this story with 
the Confessions of Augustin and of Rousseau, which it unites. " Dans saint Aiir/ustin " (he 
says, I., fi), " la passion, la nature, V individuality humainc, n apparaisscnt fjue pour ftre irnmo* 
Ifrs a la grace dirinc. Cesf rhistoire. d ttne crise dc lYime, d une renaissance, d unc Vita nuova; 
le saint rut ronnl de, nous fain- mieux connaltrc Vautrc vie qu il. avail quitti -. Dans Rousseau, 
c cxt tons le contraire ; il ne s arjit plus de la fjreicc ; la nature r!(jne, sans partage, e/le tnnmphe, 
elles ftnle; r,/a ra quc/r/iiefois jusqu^ait deyottt. Luther a present, , non pas ri-quilibrede la 
grace ft >le la nature, ma is Icur plus douloureux combat. 7>.s lutfrs de la scnsibilite, les tentfr 
tions plus hautcs du doute, bien d autrcs hommes en eut suffer! ; Pascal les eut eridemmenf, il lei 
itouffa et il en mourat. Luther n a nen cache, il nes est pu contour. 11 a donne it coir en lui 
d sonder, la plaic profondc de notre nature. C cst le scul homme pcut-ctre oil Con puisst 
etudicr < < plaisir cctte terrible anatomic." 


Lond. and X. Y., 1883; another by Morris, Philad., 18S3; comp. also 
Kostlin s art. Luther in Ilerzog, 2d oil., vol. IX.; his Festschrift, 1S83, in 
several edd., transl. by Eliz. P. Weir: Murtin Lather the Reformer, London, 
188;}; and his polemic tract: Luther und Janssen, der Deutsche He/or ma- 
tor and <-in ultramontuner Historiker, llallc, 3d ed., 1883); V. HASAK 
(R. Cath., Regensb., 1881); REIN (Leip/.., 1883, English transl. by Bell- 
ringer, X. Y., 1S83); ROOOK (Leipz., 188.3); * Pi. ITT and PETEKHEN 
(Leipzig, 1883); * MAX LEXZ (2d cd. Berlin, 1883); F. Kt iix (Luther, 
wi rit-et son antrrr. Paris, is*;5, :5 vols.): ( . BriJK (4th ed., Stnttg., 1884); 
* Til. KOI.DK (.V. Luther, (iotha, 1884, 2 vols.); J. A. FitoriiE (Luther, 
u Short nifujrnjthy, Lond. and X. Y., 1883); JOHN UAK (M. Lutli. : 
Loud., !SvS4); PATI. MAUTIX, L e., M. HADE of Schonbach (Dr. ^)f. 
Lutht-r x Lffn-n, etc.. Neusal/a, 188.VS7, 3 vols.); PETEK BAYNE (M. 
Lutft. : In* Lin- and Times, Lond. and \. Y., 1887, 2 vols.). 
On Luther s wife and his domestic life: W. BKSTK: Die (Scuch. ( tit fieri no 1 K ron 

Hunt. Halle, 1843 (131pp.). < J. HOKMAXN : Katharimi von liora, odt-r 

M. L. ala Gatte und Vnter. Leipzig, lS4ti. JOHN (i. MOKKIS: Life nf Qith. 

t-oa liora, Baltimore, 185(5. MOK. Mi:rui:u: Katherina Luther geborne von 

Bora. Dresden, I8o4; 2<1 ed., Leij>zig, 1873. 


W. BKSTE: Dr. M. Lntlu r x dlaubenslehrr. Halle, 1845 (286pp.). TIIEODOS. 
llAKXAt K (senior): L. N Tl>nln<,;, , Bd I. Erlang., 1802, Pxl. II., 1880. 
*.H i.. K(K>Ti.i.\: L. a T/K-olo .ii . Stuttg., 1S03, 2.1 ed., 18S3, 2 vols. 
By the same: L>it/i> ,-"s L< hre rn dcr Kircfir, 18->), newed., (Jotha, 1808. 
di. II. WK SSK; Die ( ltri*tl<)[iie Lathers, Leip/.., 18">2 (2.">3 pp.). 
Lr THAKDT : Die Ethik Lntlterx, Leip/.., 1807, 21 ed., 1S7">. LOMMAT/SCII : 
Lntfn-r x L> lir<- rmn etliit h-reli<j. Stniidjntnkt (inn, Berlin, 1871). H. C. 
MtKNCKEHEKO : Lnther n Lehrc von <lfr Kir<-h< . Hamburg, 187(5. 
HKI:I\(J: Di> Mi/silk Luther *. Leip/., 187i. KATTKXIJU.SCII: Luther s 
titetluny z. den ukumeniachen Symbolcit. Giessen, 1883. 


G. \V. PAN/KK: Entwurf einer wllxtandirjrn Gcuch.dfr dcntxchen Kibcliibcr*. Dr. 
M. Liith>-r* rn 1">17-1">81. Niirnberg, 1783. II. SCIIOTT: (ii-M-h. <l>r 
tenltchni liibrliiltrr*. Dr. M. Luth>-rx. Leip/.., I83o. BlNDSKIl.: Vtrzarh- 
nw dcr Original- A wgaben d-r Luthrr. Urln-rm tznn<j der Jiibcl. Halle, 1841. 
McENCKEBKItO and KlloMMANN : Vnrtchlwjf zur Rwixim ron M. L. x liibel- 
ubtr*. Halle, 1801-0 J. TliEOD. SCIIOTT: Martin Luther mid die dmtuclif 
Kil>fl. Stuttgart, 1HH3. E. KiKHM (Prof, in Halle and one of the Revisers 
of the Luther-Bible): Luther nl* IHbdii/H-ntrtzrr. <iotta. 1SS4. Coinp. the 
Probcbibel of 1HH3 (an oflicial revision of Luther s version), and the numer 
ous pamphlets for and against it. 


E. JOVAS: Die KansfUM rrtltxnmkril Luther s. lierlin, 1852 (515 pp.). Best ed. 
of his sermons by (i. STIILOSSER: Dr. ^fartin Luther* * Evangdicn-Predig- 
ttn auf alle Sonn mid Frutwjf (!>* Kirchenjahre* aux neint r 
e, Frankfurt a. M., 1.S83; 4th ed., 1885. 

104 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A. D. 1517 TO 1530. 


A. J. RAMBACH : Luther s Verdiemt urn den Kirchengesang. Hamburg, 1813. 
AUG. GEBAUER: Martin Luther und wine Zeitgcnossen (tls Kirchenlieder- 
dichter. Leipzig, 1828 (212 pp.). C. VON WINTERFELD: Dr. M. Luth. 
deutsche geislliche Lieder nebst den wdhrend seines Lebens dazu gebrauchlichen 
Stimmweixen. Leipzig, 1840 (182 pp., 4to). E. PICK: Luther as a 
Ilymnist, Philad., 1875; Elnfeste Bury (in 21 languages), Chicago, 1883. 
BACON and ALLKX: The Hymns of Martin Lnther with. hix original 
Tunes. Germ, and Eng., X. Y., 1883. Dr. DANNEIL: Luther s Geistliche 
Lieder nach seinen drei Gesangbuchern von 1524, 1520, 1545. Frank 
furt a. M., 1883. E. ACIIELIS: Die EntstehunyKzeit v. Luther s yeistl. 
Liedern. Marburg, 1884. 


JOHN G, MORRIS: Quaint Sayings and Doings concerning Luther. Philadelphia, 
1857. TUZSCHMANN: Luther in Wonns. Darmstadt, 18(iO. KU-:HLER: 
LutheSx Eeiwn. Eisenach, 1872. W. J. MANN and C. P. KRAUTII: The 
Great Reformation and the Ninety-fire These*. Philad., 1873. ZITZLAFF : L. 
auf der Xoburg. Wittenberg, 1882. KOLDE : L. auf deiti Reichxtag zu Worms. 
Halle, 1883. GLOCK : Grundriss der Padagogik Luther s. Karlsruh, 1883. 


F&stechriften zur 4QQjdhrigcn Jubel/eicr der Geburt Dr. Martin Luther s, herausgege- 
ben win koniyl. Prediger-Seminar in Wittenberg. Wittenberg, 1883. (Ad 
dresses by Drs. SCHMIEDFR, RIETSCHEL, and others.) P. KLEINERT: L. 
im Verhdltnixs zur Wissenschaft (Academic oration). Berlin, 1883 (35 pp.). 
ED. KEUSS: Akad. Fc&trede zur Lutherfeier. Strassburg, 1883. TH. BRIE- 
GER : Nene Mittheilungen iiber Luther in Worm*. Marburg, 1883, and Luther 
und scin Werk. Marb., 1883. AD. HARNACK: HL Luther in seiner Bedeutung 
far die Geseh. der Wissen-schaft und der Rildmig. Giessen, 1883 (30 pp.). 
Vid i r pxla Unimvitcta Lii.thertifcxt, den 10 S<n\, 1883, with an oration of 
K. II. GEZ. VON SCIIEELE (Prof, of Theol. at Uj)sala, appointed Bishop 
of Visby in Ctothland, 1885). Upsala, 1883. G. X. EoNWE rsc ii : Unser 
Reformator Martin Luther. Dorpat, 1883. ATPKN/ELLER, RTETSCHI, OET- 
TLI, and others: Die Lutherfeier in Bern. Bern, 1883. Prof. SALMOND 
(of Aberdeen): Martin Luther. Edinburgh, 1883. J. M. LINDSAY: M. 
Luther, in the 9th ed. of " Encyclop. Brit.," vol. XV. (1883). 71-84. JEAN 
MOXOD : Luther fwqu en 1520. Montauban, 1883. J. B. BITTIN(;KR: M. 
Luth. Cleveland, 1883. E. J. WOLF, and others : Addrwr* nn the Reforma 
tion. (Gettysburg, 1884. The Luther Document (Xc. XVII.) of the Ameri 
can Evantr. Alliance, with addresses of Rev. Drs. WM. M. TAYLOR and 
PHILLIPS BROOKS. X. Y., 1883. Si/inposiac on Luther, seven addresses of 
the seven Professors of the Union Theol. Seminary in Xew York, held 
Nov. 19, 1883. Jos. A. SKISS: Luther and the Reformation (an eloquent 
commemorative oration delivered in Philad. and Xew York). Philad. 1884. 
8. M. DEUTSCH : Luther x These voin Jlir 1519 iiber die pdpstliche Gewalt 
Berlin, 1884. H. CHEMEH: Reformation und IVisscnschfift. Gotha, 1883. 



The Luther-celebration gave rise not only t< innumerable Protestant 
glorifications, but also to many Roman Catholic defamations of Luther and the 
Rcf -filiation. The ablest works of this kind are by JAXSSKN (tracts in defence 
of his famous History of Germany, noticed in 15), G. G. EVKKS, formerly a 
Lutheran pastor (KatholtM-ft <nl<r pmtcxtantitch f Jlildesheim, 4th ed., 1888; 
Martin LntlieSn Anfiinyt , Osnabriick, 3d ed., 1884; Martin Lutlur, Main/,, 1883 
wjq., in >everal vols.), WKSTKKMAYKK (Lntlu-i** \\ < rk- i,,t Jnhr lss;5), GKU- 
"Historisch-politische Blatter " of Munich, and the "(iermania" of Berlin, for 
I8s;> and 18X4 (the chief organs of Romanism in Germany), and the Protestant 
review of these writings by WiLH. WALTHKK: Luther tin ncusten rvmitchen 
Gcrifht. Halle, 1884 (1GO pages). 

18. Lidhc^s Youth diul Training. 

In order to understand the genius and history of the German 
Reformation we must trace its origin in the }>ersonal experience 
of the monk who >hook the world from his lonely study in Wit- 
tciilH-rr, and made j>o]>c and einiKTor tremble at the power of his 

All the Reformers, like the Apostles and Evangelists, were men 
of humble origin, and pive proof that (iod s Spirit working 
through his chosen instruments is mightier than armies and 
navies. l>ut they were endowed with extraordinary talents and 
energy, and providentially prepared for their work. They were 
also aided by a combination of favorable circumstances without 
which they could not have accomplished their work. They made 
the Reformation, and the- Reformation made them. 

Of all the Reformers Luther is the first. He is so closely 
identified with the (ierman Reformation that the one would have 
no meaning without the other. His own history !- the formative 
history of the church which i^ ju>tlv called by his name, and 
which is the incarnation and perpetuation of his genius. No 
other Reformer has given his name to the church lie reformed, 
and exercised the same controlling influence over its historv. We 
nc^l not discuss here the advantages and disadvantages of this 
characteristic difference; we are only concerned with the fact. 

Martin Luther was born Nov. 10. 1 IS. J, an hour before mid- 

106 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A. D. 1517 TO 1530. 

night, at Eisleben in Prussian Saxony, where he died, Feb. 18, 
1546. 1 

On the day following he was baptized and received the name 
of the saint of the day. 

His parents had recently removed to that town 2 from their 
original home at Mohra near Eisenach in Thuringia, where Boni 
face had first preached the gospel to the Germans. Six months 
after Luther s birth they settled at Mansfeld, the capital of a rich 
mining district in the Harz mountains, which thus shares with 
the Thuringian forest the honor of being the home of the Luther 
family. They were very poor, but honest, industrious and pious 
people from the lower and uncultivated ranks. 

Luther was never ashamed of his humble, rustic origin. " I 
am," he said with pride to Melanchthon, " a peasant s son ; my 
father, grandfather, all my ancestors were genuine peasants." 3 
His mother had to carry the wood from the forest on her back, 
and father and mother, as he said, " worked their flesh off their 
bones," to bring up seven children (he had three younger 
brothers and three sisters). Afterward his father, as a miner, 
acquired some property, and left at his death 1250 guilders; 

1 His name is differently spelled : Lnder, Ludher, Lutter, Luttherr, Luther. 
The Reformer himself varied. In his first book, on the Penitential Psalms, 
1517, he signed his name after the preface Martinus Luder, but soon afterward 
he adopted the spelling Luther. In the University records of Erfurt lie was 
inscribed as Ludher, in the Wittenberg records, first as Lnder and Liider. He 
derived his name from lauter, clear, afterward from Lothar, which means laut 
(hint), renowned, according to others Leutherr, i. e. : Herr der Leute, lord of the 
people. See Erfurter Matrikel; Album Acad. Viteberg-, and Lib. Decanorum 
facultatis theol. Acad. Viteb. ed. Forstemann ; Walch, L. s Wcrke I., 46 sqq. ; 
Jiirgens 1., 11-13 : Knaake, in "Zeitsehr, f. hist. Theol.," 1872, p. 465 ; Kostlin, 
Mart. Luther, I. 21 (2d ed. 1883). The year of Luther s birth rests on the testi 
mony of his brother James ; his mother distinctly remembered the day and the 
hour, but not the year. Melanchthon s Vita Luth. 2 ; Kostlin, I. 25 and 776. 

2 The story that they went to the fair at Eisenach cannot be proven. 

3 "Ich bin einex Bauern Sohn ; mein Voter, Grossvater, Ahnherr sind rechte 
Bauem gcwest. Darauf ist mein Vater gen Mansfeld gezogen und ein Berghauer 
worden: daher bin ich." Mathesius wisely remarks with reference to the small 
beginnings of Luther: " Was* gross soil werden, muss klein angehen ; und u enn 
die Kinder zdrtlich und herrlich erzogen werden, schadet es ihnen ihr Leben lang." 


(From n Portrait by Cninuch In tin- Town Church at WVlmur.) 



a guilder being worth at that time about sixteen marks, or four 
dollars. 1 

Luther had a hard youth, without sunny memories, and was 
brought up under stern discipline. His mother chastised him, 
for stealing a paltry nut, till the blood came ; and his father once 
flogged him so severely that he fled away and bore him a tempor 
ary grudge; 2 but Luther recognized their good intentions, and 
cherished filial affection, although they knew not, as he said, to 
distinguish the incjenia to which education should be adapted. 
He was taught at home to pray to God and the saints, to revere 
the church and the priests, and was told frightful stories about 
the devil and witches which haunted his imagination all his 

In the school the discipline was equally severe, and the rod 
took the place of kindly admonition. He remembered to have 
been chastised no less than fifteen times in one single morning. 
But he had also better things to say. He learned the Catechism, 
i. c. : the Creed, the Lord s Prayer, and the Teu Commandments, 
and several Latin and German hymns. He treasured in his 
memory the proverbial wisdom of the people and the legendary 
lore of Dietrich von Bern, of Euleuspiegel and Markolf. 

He received his elementary education in the schools of Mans- 
feld, Magdeburg, and Eisenach. Already in his fourteenth year 
he had to support himself by singing in the street. 

Frau Ursula Cotta, the wife of the wealthiest merchant at 

1 Kostlin, I., 20 ; II., 498. In his small biography, pp. C> and 7 (Engl. ed.), Kost- 
lin gives the pictures of I Tans and Margaret Luther. There is a striking resem 
blance between Luther and his mother, whom Melanchthon describes as a mod 
est, God-fearing, and devout woman. Her maiden name was Ziegler (not Linde- 
mann, as usually given). Luther s father is said to have escaped by flight trial 
for murdering a peasant at Mohra in a lit of anger; but this tradition rests 
only on the testimony of J. Wicel (Epist. libri (piatanr, Lips., l-")l!7), who fell 
away from Protestantism. It is discredited by Kostlin ( I., 24). Janssen (II. 
66) leaves it in doubt. 

J Table Talk (Krl. Frkf. ed. LXL 213): "Man W/ die Kinder nirht zu hart 
gtaiipen; denn mcin V<ncr xta )><( mich eininal so sehr } (/a.s.s ich ihn Jiohe und ward 
ihm yram, bis tr mich wieiler zu thin yewohnete." 


Eisenach, immortalized herself by the benevolent interest she 
took in the poor student. She invited him to her table "on 
account of his hearty singing and praying," and gave him the 
first impression of a lady of some education and refinement. 
She died, 1511, but he kept up an acquaintance with her sons 
and entertained one of them who studied at Wittenberg. From 
her lie learned the word : " There is nothing dearer in this world 
than the love of woman." 

The hardships of Luther s youth and the want of refined 
breeding show their effects in his writings and actions. They 
limited his influence among the higher and cultivated classes, 
but increased his jxwer over the middle and lower classes. He 
was a man of the jxjople and for the people. He was of the earth 
earthy, but with his bold face lifted to heaven. He was not a 
polished diamond, but a rough block cut out from a granite 
mountain and well fitted for a solid base of a mighty structure. 
He laid the foundation, and others finished the upper stories. 

19. Luther in the University of Erfurt. 

At the age of eighteen, in the year loOl, he entered, as " Mar- 
tinus Ludher ex Mausfeld," the University of Erfurt, which had 
been founded a hundred years l>efore (1392) and was then one 
of the best in Germany. 2 \\\ that time his father was able to 
assist him so that he was free of care and could acquire a little 

1 Ho s:iys in his Tattle-Talk : " Dnnnnb angle melnc Wirthin zu Eisenach 
recht, (its ich daxclhat in <li> Schnle </in<j : 

EM iHt kcin lieher Dlny nuf Erden 
Aln Franenli< j 1>\ u:em nie may toerden. " 

Soc H orfra. Erl. Frkf. nl. LXI.. 21 J; .Tureens, I., L Sl sqr,. ; Kolde, I., 30; 
Jansson, II., 5". The relation of Luther to this excellent lady has been made 
the suhject of a useful religious novel by Mrs. Eli/. Charles, under the title: 
Chronicle of the Sclii>nl>cr</-(. <>tt(i Family, li;/ tiro of thcnutclvcx. Lundou 
and New York (M. \V. Do<ld), 1SM. The diary is fictitious. 

2 See the description by .Jiirgens, I., :)">1 s<j(j.; and Kampschulte, Die l r ni- 
teraitat Erfurt hi ihron \ <rh. z. IfinnanixmiiM n. Reformation, Trier, I^^i. 
Two parts. The University was abolished in 1810. 


He studied chiefly scholastic philosophy, namely : logic, 
rhetoric, physics and metaphysics. His favorite teacher was 
Truttvetter, called " Doctor Erfordiensis." 1 The palmy days 
of scholasticism which reared those venerable cathedrals of 
thought in support of the traditional faith of the church in the 
thirteenth century, had passed away, and were succeeded by 
the times of barren disputes about Realism and Nominalism 
or the question whether the general ideas (the unive.rsalia) had 
an objective reality, or a merely nominal, subjective existence 
in the mind. Nominalism was then the prevailing system. 

On the other hand the humanistic studies were reviving all 
over Europe and opened a new avenue of intellectual culture and 
free thought. The first Greek book in Greek letters (a grammar) 
which was published in Germany, appeared in Erfurt. John 
Crotus Rubeanus (Jiiger) who studied there since 1498 and 
became rector of the University in 1520 and 1521, was one of 
the leaders of humanism and the principal author of the first 
part of the famous anti-monkish Epistolce obscurorum virorwn 
(1515) ; he was at first an intimate friend of Hntten and Luther, 
and greeted the latter on his way to Worms (1521) as the man 
who " first after so many centuries dared to strangle the Roman 
license with the sword of the Scripture/ but afterward lie fell 
away from the Reformation (1531) and assailed it bitterly. 2 

Luther did not neglect the study of the ancient classics, especi 
ally Cicero, Vergil, Plautus, and Livy. 3 He acquired sufficient 
mastery of Latin to write it with clearness and vigor, though not 
with elegance and refinement. The knowledge of Greek he 
acquired afterward as professor at Wittenberg. In classical cul 
ture he never attained the height of Erasmus and Melanchthon, 
of Calvin and Be/a ; but in original thought and in the mastery 
of his own mother tongue he was unrivalled. He always re 
garded the languages as the sheath for the sword of the Spirit. 

1 Sec Kampsclmlte, /. r. I., 43 sqq., and G. PLITT, Jodocus Truttvetter, 
ier Lehrer Luther*, 1876. 

2 Jiirgons, I., 440; Kampsclmlte, De Johanne Croto Rubiano, 1862. 

3 O. G. Schmidt, Luther s Bckanntschaft mil den alien Classikern, 1883. 


Beside his literary studies he cultivated his early love for music. 
He sang, and played the lute right merrily. He was a poet and 
inusieian as well as a theologian. He prized music as a noble gift 
of God, as a remedy against sadness and evil thoughts, and an 
effective weapon against the assaults of the devil. His poetic gift 
shines in his classical hymns. He had a rich font of mother wit 
and quaint humor. 

His moral conduct was unblemished ; and the mouth of 
slander did not dare to blacken his reputation till after the theo 
logical passions were roused by the Reformation. He went regu- 
larlv to mass and observed the daily devotions of a sincere 
Catholic. He chose for his motto: to pray well is half the study. 
He was a devout worshipper of the Virgin Marv. 

In his twentieth year he first saw a complete (Latin) Bible in 
the University Library, and was surprised and rejoiced to find 
that it contained so much more than was ever read or explained 
in the churches. 1 His eye fell upon the story of Samuel and his 
mother, and he read it with delight. But he did not l>egin a 
systematic study of the Bible till he entered the convent ; nor did 
he find in it the God of love and mercy, but rather the God of 
righteousness and wrath. He was much concerned about his 
personal salvation and given to gloomy reflections over his sinful 
condition. ( )nce he fell dangerously ill, and was sei/.ed with a 
fit of despair, but an old priest comforted him, saying : "My dear 
Baccalaureus, be of good cheer; you will not die in this sick 
ness : God will yet make a great man out of you for the comfort 
of many." 

In lo()2 he was graduated as Bachelor of Arts, in loOo as 
Master of Arts. This degree, which corresponds to the modern 
Doctor of Philosophy in Germany, was bestowed with great 
solemnity. What a moment of majesty and splendor," says 

1 " I)n irh zuvtnzif) Jnhre nU /-, huttf ich noeh krint Jiibcl ycxehen ; irh mfintf, 
e \riirfn krine Erangdifn mid K^i^din mfhr, drnn die in den PrmtUlen xin<l." 
Werkf, Erl. e<l., LX., 255. This was partly disown fault, for several editions 
of the I^atin Vulgate ind the German Ilible. were printed before 1500. 

112 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A. D. 1517 TO 1530. 

Luther, " was that when one took the degree of Master, and 
torches were carried before him. I consider that no temporal or 
worldly joy can equal it." His talents and attainments were the 
wonder of the University. 

According to his father s ambitious wish, Luther began to pre 
pare himself for the profession of law, and was presented by him 
with a copy of the Corpus juris. But he inclined to theology, 
when a remarkable providential occurrence opened a new path 
for his life. 

20. Luther s Conversion. 

In the summer of 1505 Luther entered the Augustinian con 
vent at Erfurt and became a monk, as he thought, for his life time. 
The circumstances which led to this sudden step we gather from 
his fragmentary utterances which have been embellished by 
legendary tradition. 

He was shocked by the sudden death of a friend (afterward 
called Alexius), who was either killed in a duel, 1 or struck dead 
by lightning at Luther s side. Shortly afterward, on the second 
of July, 1505, two weeks before his momentous decision, he was 
overtaken by a violent thunderstorm near Erfurt, on his return 
from a visit to his parents, and was so frightened that he fell to 
the earth and tremblingly exclaimed : " Help, beloved Saint 
Anna ! I will become a monk." His friend Crotus (who after 
ward became an enemy of the Reformation) inaptly compared 
this event to the conversion of St. Paul at the gates of 
Damascus. 2 But Luther was a Christian before he became a monk. 

On the sixteenth of July he assembled his friends who in vain 
tried to change his resolution, indulged once more in social song, 
and bade them farewell. On the next day they accompanied 

1 Mathesius : " da ihm ein guter Gesell erstochen ward" 

3 In a letter which Crotus wrote to Luther from Bologna, Nov., 1519 : " Perge, 
ut ccepisti, relinque exemplum posteris. Nam istafacis non sine numine divum. Ad 
hcec rexpexit divina providentia, cum te redeunt-em a parentibm arleste, fulmen veluti 
alterum Paul urn ante oppidum Erfurdianum in terrain proxtravit, atque inter 
Auguatiana septa compulit e nostro consortio." Dollinger I. 139. 

21. Ll THKIl AS A MONK. ll 

him, with tears, to the gates of tlie convent. The only books 
he took witli him were t lie Latin poets Vergil and Plautus. 

Hi- father alnut went mad, when he heard the news. Luther 
himself declared in later years, that his monastic vow was forced 
from him by terror and the fear of death and the judgment to 
come ; vet he never doubted that God s hand was in it. " 1 never 
thought of leaving the convent : I was entirely dead to the world, 
until < Jod thought that the time had come." 

This great change has nothing to do with Luther s Protestant 
ism, li was simply a transition from secular to religions life 
such a.- St. Jiernard and thousands of Catholic monks Ix-lbre and 
since passed through. lie was never an infidel, nor a wicked 
man, but a pious Catholic from early youth; but he now became 
overwhelmed with a sense of the vanity of this world ami the 
absorbing importance of saving his soul, which, according to the 
prevailing notion of his age, he could best secure in the quiet 
retreat of a cloister. 

lie afterward underwent as it were a second conversion, from 
the monastic and legalistic pietv of mediaeval Catholicism to the 
free evangelical pietv of Protestantism, when he awoke to an 
experimental knowledge of justification by free grace through 

faith alone. 

21. LufJier a$ a J/o///;. 

The Augiistinian convent at Krfurt Ixxxime the cradle of the 
Lutheran Reformation. All honor to monastic-ism: it was, like 
the law of I.-racl,a wholesome school of discipline and a prepara 
tion for gospel freedom. Krasmns spent live years reluctantly 
in a convent, and alter his release ridiculed monkery with the 
Weapons of irony and sarcasm ; Luther was a monk from choice 
and conviction, and therefore all the U tter qualified to refute it 
afterward from deep ex|>criencc. He followed in the steps of 
St. Paul, who from a Pharisee of the Pharisees became the 
itrongest opponent of Jewish legalism. 

It there ever was a sincere, earnest, conscientious monk, it was 
Martin Luther. His sole motive was concern for his salvation. 

114 THE GERMAX REFORMATIOX. A. D. 1517 TO 15-30. 

To this .supreme object he sacrificed the fairest prospects of life. 
He was dead to the world and was willing to he buried out of 
the sight of men that he might win eternal life. His latter 
opponents who knew him in convent, have no charge to bring 
against his moral character except a certain pride and combative- 
ness, and he himself complained of his temptations to anger arid 
envy. 1 

It was not without significance that the order which he joined, 
bore the honored name of the greatest Latin father who, next to 
St. Paul, was to be Luther s chief teacher of theology and religion ; 
but it is an error to suppose that this order represented the anti- 
Pelagian or evangelical views of the North African father; on 
the contrary it was intensely catholic in doctrine, and given to 
excessive worship of the Virgin Mary, and obedience to the 
papal see which conferred upon it many special privileges. 

St. Augustin, after his conversion, spent several weeks with some 
friends in quiet seclusion on a country-seat near Tagaste, and 
after his election to the priesthood, at Hippo in 301, he established 
in a garden a sort of convent where with like-minded brethren and 
students he led an ascetic life of prayer, meditation and earnest 
study of the Scriptures, yet engaged at the same time in all the 
public duties of a preacher, pastor and leader in the theological 
controversies and ecclesiastical affairs of his age. 

His example served as an inspiration and furnished a sort of 
authority to several monastic associations which arose in the 
thirteenth century. Pope Alexander IV. (1250) gave them the 
so-called rule of St. Augustin. They belonged to the mendicant 
monks, like the Dominicans, Franciscans and Carmelites. They 
laid great stress on preaching. In other respects they differed 
little from other monastic orders. In the beginning of the six 
teenth century they numbered more than a hundred settlements 
in Germany. 

The Angustinian congregation in Saxony was founded in 1493, 
and presided over since 1503 by John von Staupitz, the Vicar- 
, I., 88 s<j., 780. 

21. H TIIER AS A MONK. 1 1 ."> 

General for Germany, and Luther s friend. The convent at 
Erfurt was the largest and most important next to that at .N urn- 
berg. The monks were re-pected lor their /eal in preaching, 
pastoral care, and theological study. Tlu-\ lived on aim-, which 
tliey collected themselves in the town and surrounding countrv. 
Applicants were, received as novices i or a vear of probation, 
during which they could reconsider their resolution ; afterward 
they were bound bv perpetual vows of celibacy, povertv and ol>e- 
dience to their superiors. 

Luther was welcomed bv his brethren with hymns of joy and 
praver. lie was clothed with a white woollen shirt, in honor of 
the pure Virgin, a black cowl and frock, tied bv a leathern girdle. 
He assumed the most menial offices to subdue his pride : he swept 
the floor, lx?gged bread through the streets, and submitted with 
out a mnrmnr to the ascetic severities, lie said twenty-five 
Paternosters with the Ave Maria in each of the seven appointed 
hours of prayer. He was devoted to the Holy Virgin and even 
believed, with the Augustinians and Franciscans, in her im 
maculate conception, or freedom from hereditary sin a doctrine 
denied bv tin- Dominicans and not made an article of faith till 
the vear 1 *">!. lie regularly confessed his sins U> the priest at 
lea-t OIHV a week. At the same time a complete copv of the 
Latin I>i!le was put into his hands for study, as was enjoined bv 
the new code of Matutcs drawn up bv Stanpitz. 

At the end of the vear of probat ion Luther solemnly promised 
to live until death in povertv and chastity according to the rules 
of the holv father August in, to render obedience to Almighty 
God, to the Virgin Mary, and to the prior of the monastery. 
He was sprinkled with holv water, as he lav pro-irate on the 
ground in the fnrm of a cro-s. lie was greeted as an innocent 
child fresh from baptism, and a--iuiie<l to a separate cell with 
table, bed-tead, and chair. 1 

The two years which followed, he divided between pious exor- 

1 Tho p.-ll and furniture W.TO d.-?troyod by fin>. Murdi 7. IsT J. Th<- (!! 
was reconstructed, and the convent i.i nu\\ ua orpbaii-asyluin (Murtimuttift). 

116 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A. D. 1017 TO 1030. 

cises and theological studies. lie read diligently the Scriptures, 
and the later schoolmen, especially Gabriel Diel, whom he knew 
by heart, and William Occam, whom he esteemed on account 
of his subtle acuteness even above St. Thomas and Duns Scot us, 
without being affected by his sceptical tendency. He acknowl 
edged the authority of Aristotle, whom he afterward denounced 
and disowned as "a, damned heathen." 1 lie excited the admira 
tion of his brethren by his ability in disputation on scholastic 

His heart was not satisfied with brain work. His chief con 
cern was to become a saint and to earn a place in heaven. "If 
ever/ lie said afterward, "a monk got to heaven by monkery, I 
would have gotten there." He observed the minutest details of 
discipline. Xo one surpassed him in prayer, fasting, night 
watches, self-mortification. He was already held up as a model 
of sanctity. 

J$ut he was sadly disappointed in his hope to escape sin and 
temptation behind the walls of the cloister. He found no peace 
and rest in all his pious exercises. The more he seemed to 
advance externally, the more he felt the burden of sin within. 
He had to contend with temptations of anger, envy, hatred and 
pride. He saw sin everywhere, even in the smallest trifles. The 
Scriptures impressed upon him the terrors of divine justice. He 
could not trust in God as a reconciled Father, as a God of love 
and mercv, but trembled before him, as a God of wrath, as a 
consuming fire. He could not get over the words: " I, the Lord 
thy God, am a jealous God." His confessor once told him: 
" Thou art a fool, God is not angry with thee, but thou art angry 
with God." He remembered this afterward as u a great and 
glorious word," but at that time it made no impression on him. 

" D<<r n rmnldilcitp JL ic?* 1 Arixfotrlrs." Luther s attitude to scholasticism and 
the .threat ( ircek philosopher changed again when, in support of the eucliaristic 
presence, ho l)< i<] to resort t<> the scholastic distinctions between various kinds 
of presence. (Jump. Fr. Aug. Jjerthuld Nitzsch, Luther und Ariatotelcs. Kiel, 



Tic could not point to any particular transgression ; it was sin 
as an all-pervading power and vitiating principle, sin as a cor 
ruption of nature, sin as a state of alienation from (Jod and hos 
tility to (iod, that weighed on his mind like an incubus and 
brought him at times to the brink of dc.-puir. 

He pns.-cd through that conflict between the law of God an<l 
the law of .-in \\hieh is described by Paul (Rom. vii.), and which 
ends with the cry : "( ) wretched man that I am ! who shall deliver 
me out of the lx.dy of this death V " He had not yet learned to 
add: "I thank (iod through Jesus Christ our Lord. There is 
now no condemnation to them that are in Christ Jesus. For 
the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jons made me free from 
the law of >in and of death. 1 

2 2. Luthvr and X 

(From the portrait in .St. lYtc-r.s Convent at Salzburg.) 

T. Tlie mvstic writing of have I icon republiahed in part l>y KNAAKK 
faJohannittitnupitiiOixni, I otxl:nn, I><i7. vol. I. His "\aclifnly T/i/ /W/ " w;ui 
firnt inMi-ln.<l in 1">1"); lii-< !>"<>k " V<> <!" Li>l><- d < >(!*" (fspeci.-illy -.stfrined 
by LntlitM-1 in 1">1S, and pn-snl throiiirh f\rr:il tlition; n-pnl)l. by I-i ^liinp, 
Stnttu iirt, l^t i J. Hi- lust work " Vmi >! m ///"/</ ri-rlili-n rhri*tlir.hen (ilnntn n" 
appeared after his death, lo Jo, and is directed again>t Luther tj doctrine <jf 

118 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A. D. 1517 TO 1530. 

justification by faith without works. His twenty-four letters have been pub 
lished by KOLDK: Die Deutsclie Augiustiner Cvityrxjation und Johann von iSiau- 
]>it:-. Gotha, 187 .*, p. 4l>5 sqfj. 

1 1. On Luther and Staupitz: GRIMM: DC Jo//. S fmtpitio cjuzqu? in nan*, itvtaur. 
meriti*, in I linen s "Zeitschrilt fur hist. Theol.," 1;>7 ( VII., 74-7 J). I*I.L- 
MANN : Die Ji, fi,nn<tf()i-t n rr tier lii funnntiuii, vol. II., J5ti- t JS4 (very good, see 
there the older literature). I>U:LLIX(;KR : Die YiV/o/-//</Wi, 1., 103-155. 
KAHXIS: D<:,tt*rhe Ri fnrmut., I., 150 sqq. ALIJK. KITSCH L: Di<> L<lirc r. dcr 
Jfcchtfertigung und \ ci-*nhiniu(j, I d ed., 1., llM-1 J J (on Staupitx/s theology). 
MALLET: in Ilerzog, 2 XIV., 04S-053. PAUL ZKLLKR : Stnupitz. /y iuc rd uj.- 
do jiiiat. Anschauungen und dogmengfsch. St -Uung, in the "Tlieol. Stndien und 
Kritiken," 1S7 J. Lci)\vi<; KKLLKR.- Jaltnnn. ron Sfitn/ntz, -and /as Wal lvii.w- 
thinn, in tlu "llistorische Taschenbuch," ed. by W. Manrcnbreelier, Leipzig, 
l^s."), p. 1 17-KS7 ; also his J)i> Hjnriiiation. und die (ilterai. Jt -furiiipnrteinn, Leip 
zig, lss5, p. ;};; ( .)-;>i;:>. I)r. Keller connects Staujiitz with the Waldenses and 
Anabajtist>, but without proof. KOLDK: Jon. rnn SVcn/y>. cin ]\ ald,-itxt r vnd 
WiidiTttiiifiT, in Drieger s " Zeitsehrift f iir Kirchengcseh." Gotha, 1685, p. 
420-447. DIKCKHOI-F: Uic Tlieol. dcs Joh. v. Stuup., Leipz., 1887. 

In tliis state of mental and moral airony, Luther was com 
forted l)v an old monk of the convent (the teacher of the novices) 
who reminded him of the article on the forgiveness of sins in the 
Apostles Creed, of Paul s word that the sinner is justified by 
L r ra< e throno-h faith, and of an incidental remark of St. Bernard 
(in a Sermon on the Canticles) to the same effect. 

His host friend and wisest counsellor was Johann von Stanpitz, 
Doctor of Divinity and Vicar-General of the Augustinian convents 
in (Jermany. Staupitz was a Saxon nobleman, of fine rnind, 
generous heart, considerable biblical and scholastic learning, and 
deep piety, highly esteemed wherever known, and used in import 
ant missions by the Elector Frederick of Saxony. He belonged 
to the school of practical mysticism or Catholic pietism, which is 
Ix st represented by Taulcr and Thomas a Kempis. He cared 
more for the inner spiritual life than outward forms and observ 
ances, and trusted in the merits of Christ rather than in good works 
of his own, as the solid ground of comfort and peace. The love of 
( iod and the imitation of Christ were the ruling ideas of his the- 
ologv and piety. In his most popular book, ( )n (lie J^oi C of God* 

1 It passed through three editions between 1518 and 1520. See Knaake, L, 


he describes that love as the inmost being of God, which makes 
evervthing lovelv, and should make us love Him above all 

tiling- ; Itut this love man cannot learn from man, nor from 
tin- law which only brings us to a knowledge of sin, nor from 
the letter of tin- Scripture which kills, but from the Holy Spirit 
who iwrals Clod s love in Christ to our hearts and lills it with 
the holy tlame of gratitude and consecration. "The law," he 
says in sub.-tancc, " makes known the disease, but cannot heal. 
IJut the >pirit i- hid beneath the letter; the old law is pregnant 
with Chri.-t who gives us grace to love(Jod above all tilings. To 
those who find the spirit and are led to Christ by the law, the 
Scriptures Income a source of edification and comfort. The Jews 
saw and heard and handled Christ, but thev had him not in their 
heart, and therefore thev were doubly guiltv. And so are those 
who carrv Christ onlv on their lips. The chief thing is to have 
him in our heart. The- knowledge of the Christian faith and the 
love to ( Jod are gilts of pure grace beyond our art and ability, 
and beyond our works and merits." 

Staiipitx was Luther s spiritual father, and "first caused the 
light of the gospel to shine in the darkness of his heart." l He 
directed him from his sins to the merits of Christ, from the law 
to the cro>s, from works to faith, from scholasticism to the study 
of the Scriptures, of St. August in, and Tauler. lie taught him 
that true repentance con-ists not in self-imposed penances and 
punishments, but in a change of heart and must proceed from 
the contemplation of Christ s sacrifice, in which the secret of 
God - eternal will was revealed. He also prophetically assured 
him that ( lod would overrule these trials and temptations for his 
future usefulness in the church. 

fiC> s<|. Keller s:iys that it \v:is often rcpuhlishcd \>y the Anahaptists, whom he 
regard-* as the siieee>sors of tin- nie!i:e\al \Valdenses, or " I .rei luvn." 

1 / / ijunn i>iiitiinii r>ij,i/ J; m n</</ i i Ins ill- li-Hi-ltrl* xyi/. /n/cxrov in cin-<lifnix 
no*//-//." So Luther -ay> in hi-, letter to Staiipit/., Sept. 17, \~>\* ( I >c\\Ytt<- 1 1., 
40SM|. i. where lie :nl lres-es him ;LS "/ rnulu* in C/iri.ttu jxtt> ,," and >it,Mis hini- 
8Clf "//I .M Inn* M.i.-limi* l.iitli.-rn*." 

3 In ;i letter of ( .unforl to Ilieronymus Weller, Nov. 0, \~> . ,() (DeWctte, I V., 

120 THE GERMAN REFORMMTIOX. A. D. 1517 TO 1530. 

He encouraged Luther to enter the priesthood (1507), and 
brought him to Wittenberg ; he induced him to take the degree 
of Doctor of Divinity, and to preach, lie stirred him up against 
popery, 1 and protected him in the transactions with Cardinal 
Cajetan. lie was greeted by Scheurl in 1518 as the one who 
would lead the people of Israel out of captivity. 

But when Luther broke with Rome, and Koine with Luther, 
the friendship cooled down. Staupitz held fa>t to the unity of 
the Catholic Church and was intimidated and repelled bv the 
excesses of the Reformation. In a letter of April 1, 1524, 2 he 
begs Luther s pardon for his long silence and significantly says 
in conclusion: "May Christ help us to lire according to his 
gospel which now resounds in our ears and which many carry 
on their lips ; for I see that countless persons abuse the gospel 
for the freedom of the flesh. 3 Having been the precursor of the 
holy evangelical doctrine, I trust that my entreaties may have 
some effect upon thec." The sermons which he preached at 
Sal/burg since 1522 breathe the same spirit and urge Catholic 
orthodoxy and obedience. 4 His last book, published alter his 
death (1525) under the title, "Of the holy//w Christian Faith," 
is a virtual protest against Luther s doctrine of justification by 
faith alone and a plea for a practical Christianity which shows 
itself in good works. He contrasts the two doctrines in these 
words: "The fools say, he who believes in Christ, needs no 
works; the Truth says, whosoever will be my disciple, let him 
follow Me ; and whosoever will follow Me, let him deny himself 

187), Luther says, that in his sadness and distress in the convent lie consulted 
Staupitz and opened to him his tl horrendas ft terrified* cof/itafioncs" and that he 
was told hv him : " Marline, rjuam tibi ilia tenfcitin ,s// nfili.^ ct n^n\^nn a. 
Non ciiiui tcnicrc tc xic exercct Ueus, videbis, quod ad /r.s inaijuas <jcrc/id<tx tc ministro 

1 Luther: " I). Staitpitin3 me incitabat contra papmn (al. pnpatnm}." In Col- 
lorjiiin, ed. I .indseil, III., 188. 

2 First published hv K. Krafft. in "Bricfe und Dnnnncntc aus dcr Zeit dcr 
fiifriniinti in, Kll.erteld (187<>), P- "^ sq. 

3 Ad Ii/H rll< ui cnriiix, ridfo iiimnnrrn* abtifi eraiif/rlin. " 

4 Extraetb Ironi these sermons were first published hy Kolde. 


anil carry my cross day by day ; and whosoever loves Me, keeps 
my commandments. . . . The evil spirit suggests to carnal 
Christians the doctrine that man is justified without works, 
and appeal* to Paul. ]>ut Paul only excluded works of the law 
whi -h proceed from fear and selfishness, while in all his epistles 
he coinniends as necessarv to salvation Mich works as are done in 
obedience to God s commandments, in faith and love. Christ ful 
filled the law, the fools would abolish the law ; Paul praises the law 
as holv and good, the fools scold and abuse it as evil because they 
walk according to the flesh and have not the mind of the Spirit." l 
Staupitx withdrew from the conflict, resigned his position, 
1-V20, left his order bv papal dispensation, became abbot of the 
Benedictine Convent of St. Peter in Salzburg and died Dec. 28, 
1 ">2 1, in i IK- bosom of the Catholic church which he never intended 
to leave. 2 He was evangelical, without being a Protestant. 3 lie 
cared little for Romanism, less for Lutheranism, all for practical 
Christianity. \\\< relation to the Reformation resembles that 
of Erasmus with this difference, that he helped to prepare the 
way lor it in the sphere of discipline and pictv, Krasmus in the 

1 Knaako, /. f., I., ino M| M . : Keller, Ji fonn., 340 s<j. It must have l>een this 
book whi. h Link >eiii ID Luther in tin- year l-YJo, and which Luther returned 
with a very unfavorable judgment. I *">1 linger (I.e., L, l-Vi tliink> that Luther 
looked up<m tin- death of Staiipit/ as a sort of divine judgment, a.-> lie looked 
afterward ii|>"n the deatli ol Xwinizli. 

1 .N evert hie-- his books were put in the Index by the < miiii-i! uf Trent, l")l .3, 
and were l>nnit a- hen-tii-al with all his rorresjxmdeneu l>y order o| hi^ >ucces- 
Ror, Ahlw.t Martin of St. 1 eter, in the court of the i-onvent at Sal/bur^ in 1">S4. 
8ee Fr. Hein. lIcMM-h (Old CatliJ, DT lm\>-t <l>r i;;-l>l> // n Hiir/nT, I .d. I. 
(iJonn, l.s>:!l. p. 21 J: " V///x i^t ini/.n ///(// (/ /. """"", " / / C H-li^riix f,ti 
di ni Jiihrr l.")17 i/m ii li ii Lull, IT /. ( i)ni~r 7 ./:</x fru itlutt. /. / i*t in <l<r 1. 
C /uw (jfblii /> n hit d /t ilii-m-n T<t<i, olwhnn innn in limn </</ tn-iiii/sli-nn in Trirnt, 
jrtlriijnlln /;,//<///,/ X I \ . ir.,1,1 / ittf i/-/.<x n fcnnin ii, /">.-( v a/.* //// K tjlo/il:, alt 
Al>t von St. / ,/-/ zn Siilzliiirfj i/rntin-bi-n." Tins is only one of several hundred 
errors in this pa|>a) eatal-^ne of heretical Ixx iks. 

8 < >r, as Luther expre-.^-d it in his letter to Stanpit/ of Feb. 0, la Jl, he 
wavered between Christ and the Tope: " // fiirchti; i/,r mi n-htii ?in>/i7i Chritto 
Uti l /;/! r.i/xt, \n<l,r Mitt? vliit, 1,, n, <!, ,- iftr il,rh in l,-fti /,;n St,-rit vfirt." He 
told hiin in the ^ame I. tter that he was no more that preacher of gniee :uid of 
the cross (<nn W<Vf/- (jnn<l< n-uii l Krcuzprediyer) o.-> formerly. 

122 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A. D. 1517 TO 1530. 

sphere of scholarship and illumination. Both were men of media 
tion and transition ; they beheld from afar the land of promise, 
but did not enter it. 

23. Tlic Victory of Justifying Faith. 
(Comp. \ 7.) 

The secret of Luther s power and influence lies in his heroic 
faith. It delivered him from the chaos and torment of ascetic 
self-mortification and self-condemnation, gave him rest and peace, 
and made him a lordly freeman in Christ, and yet an obedient 
servant of Christ. This faith breathes through all his writings, 
dominated his acts, sustained him in his conflicts and remained 
his shield and anchor till the hour of death. This faith was born 
in the convent at Erfurt, called into public action at Wittenberg, 
and made him a Reformer of the Church. 

By the aid of Staupitz and the old monk, but especially by the 
continued study of Paul s Epistles, he was gradually brought to 
the conviction that the sinner is justified by faith alone, with 
out works of law. He experienced this truth in his heart 
long before he understood it in all its bearings. He found in it 
that peace of conscience which he had sought in vain bv his 
monkish exercise s, lie pondered day and night over the mean 
ing of "the righteousness of God" (Rom. 1 : 17), and thought 
that it is the righteous punishment of sinners ; but toward the 
close of his convent life he came to the conclusion that it is the 
righteousness which God freely gives in Christ to those who 
believe in him. Righteousness is not to be acquired by man 
through his own exertions and merits; it is complete and perfect 
in Christ, and all the sinner has to do is to accept it from Him 
as a fr*ee gift. Justification is that judicial act of God whereby 
lie acquits the sinner of guilt and clothes him with the righteous 
ness of Christ on the sole condition of personal faith which 
apprehends and appropriates Christ and shows its life and power 
by good works, as a good tree bringing forth good fruits. Eor 
faith in Luther s svstem is far more than a mere assent of the 


mind to the authority of the church : it is a heart v trust and 
full surrender of the whole man to Christ; it lives and moves 
in Christ as its element, and is constantly obeying his will and 
following his example. It is only in connection with this deeper 
conception of faith that his doctrine of justification can be appre 
ciated. Disconnected from it. it is a pernicious error. 

The Pauline doctrine of justification as set forth in the Kpistles 
to the Romans and Galatians, had never before been clearlv and 
fullv understood, not even bv August in and Bernard, who con 
found justification with sanctilication. 1 Herein lies the difference 
between the Catholic and the Protestant conception. In the 
Catholic >v>tem justification (^txaiiufft^ is a gradual process 
conditioned bv faith and good works ; in the Protestant svstem 
it i- a single act of God, followed bv sanctification. It is based 
upon the merits of Christ, conditioned bv faith, and manifested 
by good works.- 

This ex jx*rienee acted like a new revelation on Luther. It shed 
light upon the whole P>ible and made it to him a book of life and 
comfort. lie ii lt relieved of the terrible load of guilt bv an act 
of free grace. lie was led out of the dark prison house of self- 
iniheted penance into the davlight and fresh air of Gixl s redeem 
ing love. Justification broke the fetters of legalistic slavery, and 

1 Luther himself felt ln>w widely lit- differed in this doctrine from his favorite 
Aupi-tin. I ! siid afterward in his / //,/, / ;//-. tl Princljno Autfiiitlininn rora~ 
bam, imn / ! />n//i ; d! r t/n niir in I miln <li> Tlil ir <n/f-tin<[, dux* ir/i irn.f, rn;x 
juttiflnih n li / i I iir, ,,,<! e* ./* mil Hun" K istlin. I.. 7M). Yet if we reduce 
the doctrine of justification hy faith t.. the more general term of salvation !>v 
free j/racc, it was held as ch-arly and stroimdv hv AiiL iistin and, wi- mav sav, 
w held hy all true Christians. .Jan--eii ill., 71) says: <l ()f all the hooks 
n-eoLr,,!/,.,] ;m ,l ,,<,.,) |,v the i Cat holir I Church, whet IHT leanud or popular, 
thf-e is not on.- \\hirh ilocs not contain the doctrine of justification hy Chrixt 
alnn, i-/,V L,-h,;- rnn ,!,,- 11, ,-hlf, dl<j>n, tlurrf, r/,,-/y/.M <///,//<)." I .ut the (jnes- 
tion hetwe..n th,. Komaii chur-h and I.nthcr turned on tln> .<ul,j,rtir,- <i/,/>ro- 
jirint mn of the ri-lit-i!i>n.->^ of Christ which i^ flip tt >>if>>-tirr (jrnun<l of 
jllBti Meat ion and ^alvation; while f ii:h i^ tin- .>>< </</// ruinlitiiiii. 

- Modern c\i"4cis has jiixtilj.-il this \ie\\ of Amaimj and Au*<i n.>air^ aeeordliii; 
to Hellenistic U-aLje. although et VI nolou ically t lie Verl> may Ilieail In iintkt inxt^ 
i. f., to sanctify, in accordance with verlis in <K.> (r.>/. A>//<HJ, O ti fp K-i, TTO/.^U, 
to iituk-t manifest, etc.). .Sec the Commentaries on Romans and (Jalatians. 

124 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A. D. 1517 TO 15.30. 

filled him with the joy and pence of the state of adoption ; it 
opened to him the very gates of heaven. 

Henceforth the doctrine of justification l>y faith alone was for 
him to the end of life the sum and substance of the gospel, the 
heart of theology, the central truth of Christianity, the article 
of the standing or falling church. J>y this ,-tandard he measured 
every other doctrine and the value of every book of the l>ible. 
Hence his enthusiasm for Paul, and his dislike of James, whom 
he could not reconcile with his favorite apostle, lie 1 gave dis 
proportion to solifidianism and presented it sometimes in most 
unguarded language, which seemed to justify antinomian conclu 
sions; but he corrected himself, he expressly condemned antino- 
mianism, and insisted on good works and a holy life as a necessary 
manifestation of faith. 1 And it must not be forgotten that the 
same charge of favoring antinomianism was made against Paul, 
who rejects it with pious horror : " Let it never be !" 

Thus the monastic and ascetic lite of Luther was a preparatory 
school for his evangelk-al faith. It served the office of the Mosaic 
law which, by bringing the knowledge of sin and guilt, leads 
as a tutor to Christ (Rom. 3 : 20; Gal. :>> : 24). The law con 
victed, condemned, and killed him ; the gospel comforted, justi 
fied, and made him alive. The law enslaved him, the gospel 
set him free. He had trembled like a slave; now he rejoiced as 
a son in his father s house. Through the discipline of the law 
lie died to the law, that he might live unto God (Gal. 2 : 15)). 

1 The boldest and wildest utterance of Luther on justification occurs in a 
letter to Mehmchthon ( I >e Wettc s ed. II. 37 >, dated Aug. 1, 1-V21, where lie 
gives his opinion on the vow of celibacv and >a ys : " A x/o /n crn/or >t pecca forti- 
tn ,i <l fin-linn (!(!< (n-i ili-) <( </<ti/<le in ( hr/*tn, </i/i rirfur c.-7 jtrcrrtti, mortis ft miindi" 
But it loses all its force as an argument against him and his doctrine, first by 
being addressed to Melanchthon, who was not likely t<> abuse it. and secondly by 
implying an impossibility ; for the fni-liu* rm/c and the concluding urn j ortitcr 
neutralize the fnrtiirr pwa. Paul, of course, could never have written such a 
passage. lie puts the antinomian inference: "Let us continue in sin that grace 
may abound" into the form of a question, and answers it by an indignant //?} 
yirni-rn. KOMI. (> : I. This is the diiicreuce between the wisdom of an apostle 
and the zeal of a reformer. 


In <>!) word, Luther passed through the experience of Paul. 
He understood him better than any medieval schoolman or 
ancient father. His commentary on the Kpistle to the (Jalatians 
is still one of the best, for its sympathetic grasp of the contrast 
Ix tween law and gospel, between spiritual slavery and spiritual 

Luther held this conviction without dreaming that it conflicted 
with tin- traditional creed and piety of the church. He was 
brought to it step l>v step. The old views and practices ran along 
side with it, and for several years he continued to be a sincere 
and devout Catholic. It was onlv the war with Tct/el and its 
conse(|iu-nces that forced him into the position of a Reformer and 
emancipated him from his old connections. 

lit. Li flirr Ordiinnl to the Pric^/tood. 

In the second vear of his monastic life and when ho was still 
in a state of pcrplcxitv, Luther was ordained to the priesthood, 
and on Mav _ , l"j<)7, he slid his first mass. This was a great 
event in the life of a priest. He was so overwhelmed by the 
solemnity of offering the tremendous sacrifice for the living and 
the dead that he nearly fainted at the altar. 

His father had come with several friends to witness the solem 
nity and brought him a pre-ent of twenty guilders. He was not 
yet satisfied with the monastic vows. "Have you not read in 
Holy Writ," lie said to the brethren at the entertainment given 
to the young prie-t, u that a man must honor father and mother? 
And when he was reminded, that his son was called to the con 
vent by a voice from heaven, he answered: "Would todod, it 
were no spirit of the devil." lie was not fullv reconciled to his 
son till after he had acquired fame and entered the married state. 

Luther performed the duties of the new dignity wifh conscien 
tious fidelity. He read ma every morning, and invoked during 
the week twenty-one particular saints whom he had chosen as his 
helpers, three on each dav. 

.But lie was soon to be called to a larger field of influence. 

126 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A. D. 1517 TO 1030. 

25. Luther in Itomc. 1 

"Roma qua nihilpossis 1-i.wrc mtijnx." (Horace.) 

" Vivere qui sancte vultix, dixccdite Roma. 

Omnia Itic eccelicent, n mi licet ow probum." 
" )IVr chrixtlich b ben will uncl rein, 

Der zieh am Rom und bleib daheim. 

Hie may man than wx man nur u i/l, 

Alicia j romm sein (jilt /tier nic/tt vie/. 

(Old poetry quoted by AYalch, XXII., 2.>72.) 

11 J liifJt tiger, a/.s icir in inwrm Xorden, 
Wuhnt dcr lii ttli r an der EiKjel.^tfnrten, 

Denn er sie/d da* evi// ein:S</e lunti : 
I/m umgibt der Schb nheit Glanzrjeii immel, 
Und ein zireiter Hiinmel in den Jli/in/n l 

iStei f /t Sanct Peter s iciindersamer L)om. 
Aber Ilnin in al/eni xi inem (.llanze 

Ixt ein Grab nur der Veryangenheit, 
Lcben dnfli t nur dicfrische Pflanze, 

.Die die yriine Stwide atreut. " (Schiller.) 

An interesting episode in the history of Luther s training for 
the Reformation was hi.s visit to Koine. It made a deep impres 
sion on his mind, and became effective, not immediately,, but 
several years afterward through the recollection of what he had 
seen and heard, as a good Catholic, in the metropolis of 

In the autumn of the year 1510, 2 after his removal toAVitten- 
berg, but before his graduation as doctor of divinity, Luther was 
sent to Koine in the interest of his order and at the suggestion 

1 Luther s dicta about Rome and his Roman journey are collected in Walch s 
ed.. vol. XXII.. ^)?^-^}? .*; IVKIILKK: Luther* Rnwn (1S7 2). p. !>- JO; JrimKxs, 
II., J(;;-:}")S; K.KSTI.IX, I., KiO-107; LKX/, 4.V47 ; KOLDK, I., T. J-Tii; and in 
lirie^er s " Zeitschrift liir Kirchengesch," II., 400 sqq. Conip. also, on the 
R. Cath. side, the lirief account of Jaiixxen, II., 72. ATDIN devotes his third 
chapter to the Roman journey (I., 52-05). 

2 The chronology is not quite certain. The date 1511 is adopted by Kostlin 
and Koldc. Others date the Rome journey buck to 1510 (Matin sins, Secken- 
dorf, Jiirgens, and Luther himself, in his tract Af/ainxt Popery invented by 
the Devil, Erl. ed. XX\ l., 120, though oiict- he names the year 1511). 

2"). T.UTIIER IX ROME. 127 

of Staupitz, who wished to bring about a disciplinary reform and 
closer union of the Augustiuian convents in Germany, but met 
with factious opposition. 

In companv \vitli another monk and a lay brother, as the 
custom was, he tmveled on foot, from convent to convent, spent 
four weeks in Koine in the Augustinian convent of Maria del 
popolo, and returned to Wittenberg in the following spring. The 
whole journey mu>t have occupied several months. It was the 
longest journey he ever made, and at the same time, his pilgrim 
age to the -hrines of the holy apostles where he \vi>hed to make 
a general confcs>ion of all his sins and to secure the most efficient 

We do not know whether he accomplished the object of his 
mi-Hon. 1 He left no information about his route, whether he 
passed through Swit/erland or through the Tyrol, nor about the 
sublime scenery of the Alp- and the lovely scenery of Italy. 2 
The beauties of nature made little or no impression upon the 
Reformers, and were not properly appreciated before the close 
of the eighteenth centnrv. 5 /winirli and Calvin lived on the 

1 Kolde I., SI i conjectures that the decision of Koine in the controversy among 
the .\U _ iistiiiians went against Staupitz, who soon alter \~>\ 2 left Wittenberg. 

7 He pa.-sed through Suabia and Havana, as we may judge from his descrip 
tion of the people I \Valch, XXII., J. ""! : " M nui irh r ,,-1 iv/x,- .W//, , vnllt, icfi 
mrijavl* lulii r, <l> iui ilnrrli Srfiuflbfn and linii rlnnd z/Wf/i ; (l> ini >/> .>//< / frciind- 
///( nii l gtitii tlliffi fifi /x i </< n ymit , iji lten freundt^n nn<l WiindiTxlt uti n < /// / <v / v ", 
i/n// tlinii il ii Iji nfi ti i/iit/if/t, iiinl f/utf A.nxrichtnn 1 inn ilir (ii lil." He seems to 
have seen Swit/erland aU >, of which he says (il>., p. J. iilOi ; " .SV/n v/.: i.t > in iltlrr 
uml h-i i/i i I,nn<f, il innn xi>i<{ t<i> i nd>:li< h undhurtiy, in li<*< n ihrc ^(Uirnn<j undcritU O 

Sltcftfli ." 

3 We seek in vain for descriptions of natural scenery ainoiitr the ancient 
classics, Init sevenl Hehn-w I salm- celebrate the glory of the Creator in his 
works. The I araMes of our b-rd imply that nature i* full of spiritual lessons. 
The fir-t deMTipti .n-. of the heauties of nature in Christian literature are found 
in the Kpistles of St. Ha-il. (Iregory of Na/ian/um and < ire^.-ry of Nyssa. St-e 
this ( I,. JJi*t., vol. III., Sue, S( |,|. The incomparable beauties of S\\ it/.erland 
were first dulv appreciated and made known to the world by Albrecht von 
Ilaller of I .ern in liis p. .em. "/><> .1// /i"), < J ethe (Srhiiriwrrei*e), and Schiller 
(in \\ r illi /in T>ll, where he -ive^ the mo-t charming pidure of the Lake of tlie 
Four Cantons, though he never was there). 


banks of Swiss lakes and in view of the Swiss Alps, but never 
alliule to them ; they were absorbed in theology and religion. 

In his later writings and Table-Talk, Luther left some inter 
esting reminiscences of his journey. He spoke of the fine climate 
and fertility of Italy, the temperance of the Italians contrasted 
with the intemperate Germans, also of their shrewdness, crafti 
ness, and of the pride with which they looked down upon the 
"stupid Germans "and "German beasts," as semi-barbarians; he 
praised the hospitals and charitable institutions in Florence; but 
he was greatly disappointed with the state of religion in Home, 
which he found just the reverse of what he had expected. 

Koine was at that time filled with enthusiasm for the renais 
sance of classical literature and art, but indiilcrent to religion. 
Julius II., who sat in Peter s chair from 1503 to 1513, bent his 
energies on the aggrandizement of the secular dominion of the 
papacy by means of an unscrupulous diplomacy and bloody wars, 
founded the Vatican Museum, and liberally encouraged the great 
architects and painters of his age in their immortal works of art. 
The building of the new church of St. Peter with its colossal 
cupola had begun under the direction of Bramante; the pencil 
of Michael Angelo was adorning the Sixtine chapel in the adjoin 
ing Vatican Palace with the pictures of the Prophets, Sibyls, and 
the last judgment ; and the youthful genius of Raphael conceived 
his inimitable Madonna, with the Christ-child in her arms, and 
was transforming the chambers of the Vatican into galleries of 
undying beauty. These were the wonders of the new Italian 
art ; but they had as little interest for the German monk as the 
temples and statues of classical Athens had for the Apostle Paul. 
When Luther came in sight of the eternal citv, he fell upon 
the earth, raised his hands and exclaimed, " Hail to thee, holy 
Rome! 1 Thrice holy for the blood of martyrs shed here." He 
passed the colossal ruins of heathen Rome and the gorgeous 
palaces of Christian Rome. But lie ran, " like a crazv saint/* 
through all the churches and crypts and catacombs with an 
1 "Salve! Sancta 

25. LUTHER IX ROME. 129 

unquestioning faith in the legendary traditions about the relies 
and miracle- of martyrs. 1 lit: wished that his parents were dead 
that he mi^ht help them out of purgatory by reading mass in the 
ino-t h<>lv place, according to the saving: ".Blessed is the mother 
whoM- >on celebrates mass on Saturday in St. John of the Lat- 
cran." lie ascended on bended knee- the twenty-eight steps of 
the famous Sea la Santa (said to have been transported from the 
Judgment Hall of Pontius Pilate in Jerusalem), that he might 
secure the indulgence attached to this ascetic performance since 
the dav- of Pnpe Leo 1 Y. in * >()< but at every step the word of 
the Scripture sounded as a significant protest in his ear: "The 
just shall live bv liiith" (Rom. 1 : 17).- 

Thus at the verv height of his mediaeval devotion he doubted 
its ellicacv in irivinu; peace to the troubled conscience. This 
doubt was strengthened by what he -aw around him. lie was 
favorably -truck, indeed, with the business administration and 
police regulations of the papal court, but shocked bv the unbelief, 
levity and immorality of the clergy. Money and luxurious 
living seemed to have replaced apostolic poverty and self-denial. 
He saw nothing but worldly splendor at the court of Pope Julius 
II., who had ju.-t returned from the sanguinary siege of a town 
conducted by him in person. He afterward thundered against 
him as a man of blood. He heard of the fearful crimes of Pope 
Alexander VI. and his family, which were hardly known and 
believed in Germany, but freelv spoken of as undoubted fact- in 
the fresh remembrance of all Romans. While he was reading 
one mass, a Roman priest would finish seven. He was urged to 
hurry up (yxww/, y>/tw/ /), and to "send her Son home to our 
Lady." lie- heard priests, when consecrating the elements, repeat 
in Latin the word-: " Bread thou art, and bread thou shalt 

"Mi//-* irh v,,r rin * tJI.-r II. ,11-, ,;" h<> .said, //,/ ,1,,,-rh nllf. Kirchcn Mnd 
Kltifti-n, iihtiilil, <tlli:<, w.w i1nx,-ll>.<t ,-ln< l .-n inul ,:--tu nk> n />/." 

This interesting incident r--ts on tin- authority of his son Paul, who heard 
h from the HpH of hw father in 1-VH. Modern I ..)..-. I ius VII. :md Tins IX., 
hnvt- i/rantcd additional indulgences to thi.-- \vlio limb iij> tin* Scala Santa. 


130 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A. D. 1517 TO 1530. 

remain ; wine thou art, and wine thou shalt remain." The terra 
"a good Christian" (buon Christiano) meant "a fool." He was 
told that " if there was a hell, Home was built on it," and that 
this state of things must soon end in a collapse. 

He received the impression that " Home, once the holiest city, 
was now the worst." He compared it to Jerusalem as described 
by the prophets. 1 All these sad experiences did not shake his 
faith in the Roman church and hierarchy, so unworthily repre 
sented, as the Jewish hierarchy was at the time of Christ ; but 
they returned to his mind afterward with double force and ;ave 

*> O 

ease and comfort to his conscience when he attacked and abused 
popery as "an institution of the devil." 2 

Hence he often declared that he would not have missed 
" seeing Rome for a hundred thousand florins; for I might have 
felt some apprehension that I had done injustice to the Pope; 
but as we see, so we speak." 

Six years after his visit the building of St. Peter s Dome by 
means of the proceeds from papal indulgences furnished the 
occasion for the outbreak of that war which ended with an irre 
vocable separation from Rome. 

While passing through Florence on his way to Rome, Luther 
attracted the attention of the famous painter, Giorgione, who 
happened to meet him in the Augustiniau Convent. 3 He took 
his picture as he played on a small organ and looked dreamily 
to one side. This picture, which is one of the treasures of the 
Pitti gallery in Florence, has recently been identified as intended 
tor Luther, and is remarkable for the lustre of his dark eyes, 
and the Teutonic features as contrasted with two Italians. 

1 "Ex rjehf t uns wic den Prophetcn, die klayen aucJi iiher Jerusalem, und 
say en : Die feinc f/liiubiye Stadt is zur Hurc yeworden. Denn aus dem lies- 
ten koDiutt dllezeit das Aergste, wie die Exempel zeiyen zu alien Zeiten." 
Waloh, XXII., 2378. 

2 This was the topic of one of his last and most abusive works: "Wider 
das Papxtthwn zu liom vom Teufel yestiftet." March, 1545. 

8 It must have hcon in 1510 or early in 1511, for Giorgione died of the 
plague in 1511. The picture opposite is from a photograph made in Florence. 
Comp. " Revista Christiana," Fireuze, 1883, p. 422. 

c - 


26. The r,ih-ei *ity of Wittenberg. 

GROHMANN: Annalcn <kr Unicerxitat zit Wittenberg, ISQ 2, 2 vols. MTTHER: 
Die Wittenberyer Universitdta undFacultatstatsxtudienv.Jahrl.oQ8, Halle, 
18G7. K. SCHMIDT: Wittenbery unter Kurf drst Friedrich dem Weiwn. 
Erlungen, 1877. JUEKGEN.S: 11., 151 sqq. and 182 sqq. (very thorough). 
KCESTLIX, I., 90 sqq. KOLDE: Friedrich der Wcise mid die An/tinge der 
fit-formation, Erlangen, 1881 ; and his Lcben Luther s, 1884, I., G7 sqq. 

In the year 1502 Frederick III., surnamed the Wise, Elector 
of Saxony (b. 1463, d. 1525), distinguished among the princes 
of the sixteenth century for his intelligence, wisdom, piety, and 
cautions protection of the Reformation, founded from his limited 
means a new University at Wittenberg, under the patronage of 
the Virgin Mary and St. Augustin. The theological faculty was 
dedicated to the Apostle Paul, and on the anniversary of his 
conversion at Damascus a mass was to be celebrated and a sermon 
preached in the presence of the rector and the senate. 

Frederick was a devout Catholic, a zealous collector of relics, a 
believer in papal indulgences, a pilgrim to the holy land ; but at 
the same time a friend of liberal learning, a protector of the 
person of Luther and of the new theology of the University 
of Wittenberg, which he called his daughter, and which he 
favored to the extent of his power. Shortly before his death he 
signified the acceptance of the evangelical faith by taking the 
communion in both kinds from Spalatin, his chaplain, counsellor 
and biographer, and mediator between him and Luther. He was 
unmarried and left no legitimate heir. His brother, John the 
Constant (1525-1532), and his nephew, John Frederick the 
Magnanimous (1532-1547), both firm Protestants, succeeded 
him ; but the latter was deprived of the electoral dignity and 
part of his possessions by his victorious cousin Moritz, Duke 
of Saxony, after the battle of Muhlberg (1547). The successors 
of Moritz were the chief defenders of Lutheranism in Germany 
till Augustus I. (1WM-1733) sold the faith of his ancestors for 
the royal crown of Poland and became a Roman Catholic. 


134 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A. D. 1517 TO 1530. 

Wittenberg l was a poor and badly built town of about three 
thousand inhabitants in a dull, sandy, sterile plain on the banks 
of the Elbe, and owes its fame entirely to the fact that it became 
the nursery of the Reformation theology. Luther says that it 
lay at the extreme boundary of civilization, 2 a few steps from 
barbarism, and speaks of its citizens as wanting in culture, cour 
tesy and kindness. He felt at times strongly tempted to leave it. 
Melanchthon who came from the fertile Palatinate, complained 
that he could get nothing fit to eat at Wittenberg. Mycouius, 
Luther s friend, describes the houses as "small, old, ugly, low, 
wooden." Even the electoral castle is a very unsightly structure. 
The Elector laughed when Dr. Pollich first proposed the town as 
the seat of the new university. But Wittenberg was one of his 
two residences (the other being Torgau), had a new castle-church 
with considerable endowments and provision for ten thousand 
masses per annum, and an Augustinian convent which could 
furnish a part of the teaching force, and thus cheapen the 
expenses of the institution. 

The university was opened October 18, 1502. The organiza 
tion was intrusted to Dr. Pollich, the first rector, who on account 
of his extensive learning was called " lu.v mundi" and who had 
accompanied the Elector on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem (1493), 
and to Staupitz, the first dean of the theological faculty, who 
fixed his eye at once upon his friend Luther as a suitable pro 
fessor of theology. 

Wittenberg had powerful rivals in the neighboring, older and 
better endowed Universities of Erfurt and Leipzig, but soon 
overshadowed them by the new theology. The principal pro 
fessors were members of the Augustinian order, most of them 
from Tubingen and Erfurt. The number of students was four 
hundred and sixteen in the first semester, then declined to fifty- 

1 Probably, Weissenberg, from tbe white sand-hills on the Elbe. So Junrens 
II., 11K). The original inhabitants of the region \verc Slavs (Wonds), but 
expelled or absorbed by the Saxous. The town dates from the twelfth century. 

* "Intermino civilitatis" 



five in 1505, partly in consequence of the ]>cstilenee, began to 
rise again in 1507, and when Luther and Melanchthou stood on 

the siunniit of their fame, they attracted thousands of pupils 
from all countries of Europe. Melanchthon heard at times 
eleven languages spoken at his hospitable table. 

27. Luther </.s Professor till 1517. 

Luther was suddenly called bv Staupitz from the Augustinian 
Convent of Krfurt to that of \Vittenl)erg with the expectation 
of becoming at the same time a lecturer in the university. ITe 

arrival there in October, 1508, wa^ called back to Erfurt ill 

Tm: Li " (pre\ imisly tin- Augustinian Convent), before 
its recent restoration. It contains the Luther-Museum. 

autumn, 1509, was sent to Koine in behalf of his order, 1510, 
returned to Wittenberg, 1511, and continued tin-re till a lew 
days In-fore his death, 15 Hi. 

He lived in the convent, even after his marriage. 1 1 is plain 
study, Ix-d-room and lecture-hall are still shown in the Luther- 
haus." The lowliness of his work-shop forms a sublime contrast 
to the grandeur of his work. From their humble dwellings 

136 THE GERMAN REFOUMRTION. A. P. 1517 TO 1530. 

Luther and Melanchthon exerted a mightier influence than the 
contemporary popes and kings from their gorgeous palaces. 

Luther combined the threefold office of sub-prior, preacher and 
professor. He preaehed both in his convent and in the town- 
church, sometimes daily for a week, sometimes thrice in one day, 
during Lent in 1517 twice every day. He was supported by the 
convent. As professor he took no fees from the students, and 
received only a salary of one hundred guilders, which alter his 
marriage was raised by the Klector John to two hundred guilders. 1 

LUTHER S ROOM IN "WITTENBERG. From a photograph. 

He first lectured on scholastic philosophy and explained the 
Aristotelian dialectics and physics. But he soon passed through 
the three grades of bachelor, licentiate, and doctor of divinity 
(October iStli and 19th, 1512), and henceforth devoted himself 
exclusively to the sacred science which was much more congenial to 

1<( Ware ex nicht cjeschehen" snys Luther, " so halti icli nut-It -incincr Vfrlicim- 
thnny mir r<>rf/cnoinm< /i, fiir Ilmtorar zu lwn. Ah< r <ln mir Guff zurork(tm,80 lutbe 
ieli rnt in L<l><n Inn;/ kein Esrinplnr [he means, of his writings] verkaiift, ru)ch 
gcl^i-ii inn Loli:,. ;/! (n,<-k tint Rahm, JtvVf.s Gutt, mi/ mir tux Grab nchmen" 
Jiirgens, II., iM.S s ( j. 


his taste. Staupitz urged him into these academic dignities, 1 and 
the Klector who had l>een favorably impressed with one of his ser 
mons, otll-red to pay the exj>enscs (fifty guilders) tor the acquisi 
tion of the doctorate.- Afterward in seasons of trouble Luther 
often took comfort from the title and office of his doctorate of 
divinity and his solemn oath to defend with all his might the 
Holv Scriptures against all errors. 3 He justified the burning 
of the Pope s bull in the same way. ]>ut the oath of ordination 
and of the doctor of theology implied also obedience to the Roman 
church (m A x/Vr I oiiutmi obedientuuii) and her defence against all 
heresies condemned by her. 4 

With the year 1">12 his academic teaching began in earnest, 
and continued till Io4i), at first in outward harmony with the 
Roman church, but afterward in open opposition to it. 

lie was well equipped for his position, according to the advan 
tages of his a ire, but verv poorly, according to modern require 
ments, as far as technical knowledge is concerned. 

1 LutliiT remembered the pear tree under which Staupitz overeame his 
objections to the labors and responsibilities of the doctorate, lie thought 
himself unable to endure them with his frail body, but Staupitz replied play 
fully ami in prophetic anticipation of the jrreat work in store for him: //i 
Gottf* \niiif n. f Uiwr Hur Cintt hnt <jrn.<*- (!c*-hajti- ; Er Ixdnrj iln,b,-n aitch 
kluyr Lriiff ; iff/in lltr mm xtrrfiff, xn iiiiU-<> t flir tlnrt win Rutlt<i>tr x in." 1 

2 See K. F. Th. Schneider, Lnthrrx l^-oinntinn zinn Dnrtnr imrl M<lanchih<>n* 
xum RaecalnureuH 1>T T/ti!<i([i,, Neuwicd, ]st!() (. is pp.). Jle ^ r ives Luther s 
Latin oration which he delivered in honor of theology on the text : " I will #ive 
you a mouth an<l wixloin " (Luke L l : 1".). The expenses of the promotion to 
the detrree of the baccalaureate, Luther m-vrr paid. The recordsof the dean note 
this fact : "A l/nir i,>,ii .-iti.ifiTit fun/llnti," and Luther afterward wrote on the mar 
gin: A- fncirt, ijnin liinf juinju r >-t xnl> tihfilii-nfin niliil Imfiitit. Schneider, p. <!. 

3 S-e his utterances on the importance of his doctorate in Mathesins (.MTHIO/J* 
I. XV.) and .1 iir>r ns t 1 L. -Hi.",-4ns). .liirtrcn^ points out aixl explains 
(p. 4 J4 M||.) the inconsistency of Luther in his appeal to human authority and 
Overestimate of the oflicial title, liv. ry step in his public career was accompa 
nied by scruples of conscience which he had to solve the best way IIP could. 

* Kostlin says ( Kntfl. transl. of the short biography, p. r>") : "Obedience to 
the I ope was not required at AVittenbertr, as it was at other universities." I .ut 
it in implied in oltedicnce to the Roman church. The university was char 
tered by the Kmperor Maximilian, but the Klector had not neglectetl to secure 
the papal sanction. Si-e Jiirgens, 11. l!o7. 

138 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A. D. 1517 TO 1530. 

Although a doctor of divinity, he relied for several years 
almost exclusively on the Latin version of the Scriptures. Very 
few professors knew Greek, and still less, Hebrew. Luther had 
acquired a superficial idea of Hebrew at Erfurt from Reuchlin s 
Rudimenta Hebraica. 1 The Greek he learned at Wittenberg, we 
do not know exactly when, mostly from books and from his 
colleagues, Johaun Lange and Melanchthon. As late as Feb. 
18th, 1518, he asked Lauge, "the Greek," a question about the 
difference between avdOr^a and avdOsna, and confessed that 
he could not draw the Greek letters. 2 His herculean labor in 
translating the Bible forced him into a closer familiarity with the 
original languages, though he never attained to mastery. As a 
scholar he remained inferior to Reuchlin or Erasmus or Melanch 
thon, but as a genius he was their superior, and as a master of 
his native German he had no equal in all Germany. Moreover, 
he turned his knowledge to the best advantage, and always seized 
the strong point in controversy. He studied with all his might 
and often neglected eating and sleeping. 

Luther opened his theological teaching with David and Paul, 
who became the pillars of his theology. The Psalms and the 
Epistles to the Romans and Galatians remained his favorite books. 
His academic labors as a commentator extended over thirty-three 
years, from 1513 to 1546, his labors as a reformer embraced only 
twenty-nine years, from 1517 to 1546. Beginning with the 
Psalms, 1513, he ended with Genesis, November 17th, 1545, 
three months before his death. 

His first lectures on the Psalms are still extant and have 

lr This hook, published at Pforzheim, 1506, at the author s expense, is the 
first Hebrew grammar written by a Christian, and broke the path for Hebrew 
learning in Germany. So far Reuchlin was right in calling it a monumentwm 
cere perennius. 

2 DeWette, I. 34 : " Petimns a te, Grrrce, nt controversriam nostram dissnlras, qua 
sit dlxtantia infer anathema per epxilon, et anathema per v .... Nesciofigura* 
literarum pine/ere." In his Table Talk he says : " Teh kann iceder yriechusch noch 
hebraiwh ; ich will aber dennoch einem Griechen iind Ilebraer ziemlich begegnen" 
Com p. on his linguistic studies and accomplishments, Jiirgens, I. 470 sqq.; 
II. 428 sqq. 



recently Ix-en published from the manuscript in Wolfenbuttel. 1 

Thev are exegeticidly worthless, but theologically important as 
his first attempt to extract a deeper spiritual meaning from the 
Psalms. He took Jerome s Psalter as the textual basis;* the 
few Hebrew etymologies are all derived from Jerome, Augustin 
(who knew no Hebrew), and Reuchlin s lexicon. He followed 
closely the mediaeval method of interpretation which distinguished 
four ditlerent senses, and neglected the grammatical and historical 
interpretation. Thus Jerusalem means literally or historically 
the city in Palestine, allegorically the good, tropologically virtue, 
analogically reward; Babylon means literally the city or empire 
of Babylon, allegorically the evil, tropologically vice, anagogic- 
ally punishment. Then again one word may have four bad and 
four good senses, according as it is understood literally or figura 
tively. Sometimes he distinguished six senses. He emphasized 
the prophetic character of the Psalms, and found Christ and his 
work everywhere/ He had no sympathy with the metluxl of 

1 He had the Latin text of the Psalms printed, and wrote between the lines 
and on the margin hi- nolc> in verv small and almost illegible letters. Kost- 
lin ives a fac-simile page in Luther* L>t-n, p. ~, l (Engl. ed. p. <i-l). The whole 
was published with painstaking accuracy by Kawerau in the third volume of 
the Weimar ed. (lxs. >). 

J The innumerable references to the J[> bnnin are never intended for the 
original, but lor Jerome s r*<tlt>-rin m justa II<-br<rox. Paul de Lagarde has pub 
lished an edition. Lips., 1<S74. 

3 Luther illustrates this double four-fold scheme of exegesis by the following 
table ( Weimar ed. III. 11): 


in term ( i>t<i<ni hyriorire populua in /.inn erint- 


innnm n rutnn 
f Juxtitia plt tn- 

en* BtibyUmifo Ecrlexaslco 

,,, i- i ( <l< fr 
Alif nonce, hcclemn \ ., . 

- Kf 

( ilnria fnt urn 
KITH iii I inn rnriH iii 

J . rontra VAM 

( i in i in- i 
Juxtitin j ulri 

cterna tn ren*. 
/XT O}>]K).iitinn. 

4 This fanciful allegorizing and spirituali/ing method of interpreting the 
Psalms by \\hich they are made to teach almost anvthing that is pious and 
edifying, Is still popular even in some Protestant churches, especially the 

140 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A. D. 1517 TO 1530. 

Nicolaus Lyra to understand the Psalter from the times of the 
writer. Afterward lie learned to appreciate him. 1 He followed 
Augustin, the Glossa ordinaria, and especially the Quincuplex 
Psaltci-inm of Faber Stapulensis (Paris, 1508 and 1513). He 
far surpassed himself in his later comments on the Psalms. 2 It 
was only by degrees that he emancipated himself from the tra 
ditional exegesis, and approached the only sound and safe method 
of grammatico-historical interpretation of Scripture from the 
natural meaning of the words, the situation of the writer and 
the analogy of his teaching, viewed in the light of the Scriptures 
as a whole. He never gave up altogether the scholalistic and 
allegorizing method of utilizing exegesis for dogmatic and devo 
tional purposes, but he assigned it a subordinate place. "Alle 
gories," he said, "may be used to teach the ignorant common 
people, who need to have the same thing impressed in various 
forms." He measured the Scriptures by his favorite doctrine of 
justification by faith, and hence depreciated important books, 
especially the Epistle of James and the Apocalypse. But when 
his dogmatic conviction required it, he laid too much stress on 
the letter, as in the eucharistic controversy. 

From the Psalms he proceeded to the Epistles of Paul. Here 
he had an opportunity to expound his ideas of sin and grace, the 
difference between the letter and the spirit, between the law and 
the gospel, and to answer the great practical question, how a 
sinner may be justified before a holy God and obtain pardon and 
peace. He first lectured on Romans and explained the differ 
ence between the righteousness of faith and the righteousness of 
works. He never published a work on Romans except a preface 
which contains a masterly description of faith. His lectures on 

Church of England. Comp. c. r/. Dr. Neale and Dr. Littledale s Commentary on 
the / W///S fram. prim it I re (tnd inert itr ml t/r//r/v?. London, fourth ed., 1884, 4 vols. 
The cclel >rated Baptist preacher, Spurjreon, lias written a commentary on the 
Psalms, in seven volumes, which is likewise full of allegorizing interpretation, 
but mostly derived from older Protestant and Puritan sources. 
1 Hence the saving: "*SV Lyra nonlyraswt, Lnttienis non saltasset" 
a Ed. by Dr. Ik-rtheau in the fourth vol. of the AV-imar ed. (1886). 


Galatians he began October 27th, 1 ">!<), and resumed them 
repeatedly. They appeared first in Latin, September, loll), and 
in a revised edition, ]")- }, \vitli a preface of Melanchthon. 1 They 
an 1 the most popular and effective of his commentaries, and were 
often published in different languages. John Buuy an was greatly 
benefited l>v them. Their chief value is that thev bring us into 
living contact with the central idea of the epistle, namely, evan 
gelical freedom in Christ, which lie reproduced and adapted in 
the very spirit of Paul. Luther always had a special preference 
for this anti-Judaic Kpistle and called it his sweetheart or his 
wife. 2 

These exegetical lectures made a deep impression. They were 
thoroughly evangelical, without lx?ing anti-catholic. Thev reached 
the heart and conscience as well as the head. They substituted 
a living theology clothed with flesh and blood for the skeleton 
theologv of scholasticism. Thev were delivered witli the energy 
of intense conviction and the freshness of personal experience. 
The genius of the lecturer flashed from his deep dark eves which 
seem to have -truck every observer. "This monk," said Dr. 
Pollich, 4k will revolution i/e the whole scholastic teaching." 
Christopher Scheurl commended Luther to the friendship of Dr. 
Eek (his later opponent) in January, loll, as "a divine who 
explained the epistles of the man of Tarsus with wonderful 
genius." Melanchthon afterward expressed a general judgment 
when he said that Christ and the Apostles were brought out again 
as from the darkness and filth of prison. 

28. Lnffn i and .J///.v//r/x///. The Theoloffia Germanica. 
In 1">K) Luther read the sermons of Tauler, the mystic revival 
preacher of Strassburg (who died in 13(31), and discovered the 

1 S-- the first !. in tin- Weimar !. <>f liis \v..rks, vol. II. -MMJK Tliis 
commentary of K.l .i must !>< di-tini:uishi-d fn>m tin- larger work of 1~>:5"> which 
has the same title, lnit rests on ilillen-nt h-ctures. 

" In Derenil>er, I t M : " Kiiintnln ml (ln/ntn* i*t inrinr Firixtoln, d r irh mich 
vrrlruut hnf , ini-hir A //c r<>>i ////vr." Wt imar e<l. II.-lii7. Melanchthon called 
Luther s commentary the thread <>f Theseus in the laliyiintli "f N. T. 

142 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A. D. 1517 TO 1530. 

remarkable book willed " German Theology/ which he ascribed 
to Tauler, but which is of a little later date from a priest and 
custos of the Deutsch-Herm Uaus of Frankfort, and a member 
of the association called " Friends of God." It resembles the 
famous work of Thomas a Kempis in exhibiting Christian piety 
as an humble imitation of the life of Christ on earth, but goes 
beyond it, almost to the very verge of pantheism, by teaching in 
the strongest terms the annihilation of self-will and the absorp 
tion of the soul in God. Without being polemical, it represents 
by its intense inwardness a striking contrast to the then prevail 
ing practice of religion as a mechanical and monotonous round 
of outward acts and observances. 

Luther published a part of this book from an imperfect manu 
script, December, 1516, and from a complete copy, in 1518, with 
a brief preface of his own. 1 He praises it as rich and over- 
precious in divine wisdom, though poor and unadorned in words 
and human wisdom. He places it next to the Bible and St. 
Augustin in its teaching about God, Christ, man, and all things* 
and says in conclusion that "the German divines are doubtless 
the best divines." 

There are various types of mysticism, orthodox and heretical, 
speculative and practical. 2 Luther came in contact with the 
practical and catholic type through Staupitz and the writings of 
St. Augustin, St. Bernard, and Tauler. It deepened and spirit 
ualized his piety and left permanent traces on his theology. The 
Lutheran church, like the Catholic, always had room for mystic 
tendencies. But mysticism alone could not satisfy him, especially 

1 Both prefaces are printed in the Weimar ed. of his works I. 153 and 378 
sq. The book itself has gone through many editions; the best is by Franz 
Pfeiffer, Theoloyia deutxch, Stuttgart. 1851, third ed. 1855. There is a good 
English translation by Susanna Wink worth, Theoloyia Germanica, with addi 
tions by Canon Kingsley and Chevalier Bunsen, (London, 1854, new ed. 1874; 
reprinted at Andover, 1846). Several characteristic mystic terms, as Entwer- 
duny, Gela&senheit, Veryottuny, are hardly translatable. 

2 Ed. von Ilartmann, the pessimist, says (Die Philox. dex Unbewussten, Berlin, 
1869, p. 276) : " Die Myxtik i*t eine Schlingpflanze, die an jedem Stabe emporwueh- 
ert wid sich mil den extrcnmten Geyenxatzen gleichgut abzufindcn 


after the Reformation lx>gan in earnest. It was too passive and 
sentimental and shrunk from conflict. It was a theology of 
feeling rather than of action. Luther was a horn fighter, and 
waxed stronger and stronger in battle. Jlis theology is biblical, 
with such mystic elements as the Bible itself contains. 1 

29. The Penitential 7W//i.v. The Arc of the Reformation. 

The first original work which Luther published was a Gorman 
exposition of the seven Penitential Psalms, 1517." It was a fit 
introduction to the reformatory Theses which enjoin the true 
evangelical repentamv. In this exposition he sets forth the doc 
trines of sin and grace and the comfort of the gosjxjl for the 
Understanding of the common people. It shows him first in the 
light of a popular author, and had a wide circulation. 

Luther was now approaching the prime of manhood. He was 
the shining light of the young university, and his fame began to 
spread through Germany. Hut he stood not alone, lie had valu 
able friends and co-workers such as Dr. Wcn/eslaus Link, the 
prior of the convent, and .John Lange, who had a rare knowledge 
of Greek. ( arlstadt also, his senior colleague, was at that time in 
full sympathy with him. Nicolaus von Amsdorf, of the same age 
with Luther, was one of his most faithful adherents, but more; 
influential in the pulpit than in the chair. Christoph Scheurl, 
Professor of jurisprudence, was likewise intimate with Luther. 

1 See Hermann Hering, Die Myxtik Lut hers im Zuxammenhanfjc winer Theolngie 
tin// in ihrnn \ <rfi. znr iilti n n Myxtik. Ix-ipzi^, l.ST .t. He distinuuishcs three 
peri<xls in Luther s relation to : (1) RomdniHrh-inytturhe l*friixlc ; 
(2) Germani*rh-my8ti*che I^n mlf ; (. {) Conflict with the false mysticism of Miin- 
zer, CarUtadt, the Zwickau Prophets, ;uul Schwenkfeldt. 

1 Weimar ed., vol. I. 1">4-L"JO. A Latin copy had appeared already in lf>13 
and is preserved in the library at Wolfenbuttol, from which Prof. E. Kiehm of 
Halle published it: Tnitium thfolnyitr Jjiithfri. >S . ffnnpln ttcholiorum <]iiihiu< J>. 
Lutheran Ptvillrriiim inlrrpretari nrjrit. I nrf. I. Srjttrm PMtlnii pcenitmtinlf*. 
Trrtnm oriyinnlrm nunc jtrimnm df Lutheri aulographo riprimejulinn nirnvit. 
Hall*-, 1ST I. Luther s closing lectures of loKJ exist likewise in MS. at Dres 
den, from which they were published hy .!.( . Seidemann in : Ihtrtnri* M. Lnlhrri 
iehf>l/r uiftlitir tic 1 ivilmi* annix lol. i-l")!);. Dresden, 187G, in 2 voltf. 


Nor must we forget Georg Spalatin, who did not belong to 
the university, but had great influence upon it as chaplain 
and secretary of the Elector Frederick, and aeted as friendly 
mediator between him and Luther. The most effective aid 
the Reformer received, in 1518, in the person of Melanchthon. 1 

The working forces of the Reformation were thus fully 
prepared and ready for action. The scholastic philosophy 
and theology were undermined, and a biblical, evangelical 
theology ruled in Wittenberg. It was a significant coin 
cidence, that the first edition of the Greek Testament was 
published by Erasmus in 1516, just a year before the Reforma 
tion. 2 

Luther had as yet no idea of reforming the Catholic 
church, and still less of separating from it. All the roots of 
his life and piety were in the historic church, and he consid 
ered himself a good Catholic even in 1517, and was so in fact. 
He still devoutly prayed to the Virgin Mary from the pulpit ; 
he did not doubt the intercession of saints in heaven for the 
sinners on earth ; he celebrated mass with full belief in the 
repetition of the sacrifice on the cross and the miracle of tran- 
substantiation ; he regarded the Hussites as "sinful heretics" 
for breaking away from the unity of the church and the 
papacy which offered a bulwark against sectarian division. 

13 ut by the leading of Providence he became innocently 
and reluctantly a Reformer. A series of events carried him 
irresistibly from step to step, and forced him far beyond 

1 On the early colleagues of Luther, see Jiirgens, II. 217-235. 

2 Luther made good use of it for his translation, but was not pleased with 
the writings of Erasmus. As early as March 1, 1517, he wrote to John 
Lang<^: "I now read our Erasinus, but he pleases me less every day. It is 
well enough that he should constantly and learnedly refute the monks and 
priests, and charge them with a deep-rooted and sleepy ignorance. But I 
fear he does not sufficiently promote Christ and the grace of God, of which 
he knows very little. He thinks more of the human than the divine. . . . 
Not every one who is a good Greek and Hebrew, is also for this reason a 
good Christian. The blessed Jerome with his five tongues did not equal the 
one-tongued Augustin, although Erasmus thinks differently." liricfe, ed. 
De Wette, I. 52. 


his original intentions. Had lie foreseen the separation, he 
would have shrunk from it in horror. He was as much the 
child of his age as its father, and tin- times molded him In-fore 
he molded the times. This is the ease with all men of Provi 
dence: they are led by a divine hand while they are leading 
their fellow-men. 


The works of Luther written before theft." Theses (reprinted in the Weimar 
ed., I. 1-L oS, III.. IV. ) arc as follows: Commentary on tin- I silms: a number 
of sermons: Tnii talnx >h /</ *, yni a<f crrli xins rnnfti iiunt (an investigation of 
the ridit of asylum; first printed l.~17, anonymously, then under Luther s 
name, r>2<>, at Landshut: but of doubtful pMiuineness); Srrn> i>ra.<<rri]>fnf< 
prn p mitv in Litzlca, l.~>12 (a Latin sermon prepared for his friend, the Pro 
vost (Jeori: Masrov of Leitzkau in Brandenburg); several Latin Sinuous from 
1514-1")1T; (J t i xtltt id 1 ririfiitx <1 mln-Jnti- fnnninis sine aratia ilixjintdtti, 
15H5; Preface to his first edition of "(lerman Theology," lol(5; T/t< m-rnt 
Penitent I ll r*nhnx, l.MT; Dlsjmtdfl t rmilrn xrholdst Irani thatl tatam, \~>\1. 
The la^t arc !7 theses against the philosophy of Aristotle, of whom he said, 
that lie would hold him to be a devil if he had not had flesh. These theses 
were published in September, 1")17, and were followed in October by the ..> 
Theses a^aiii -t the tratlic in Indulgences. 

The earlic<t letters of Luther, from April 22, l. jOT, to Oct. HI, ir>17, 
are addressed to Hraun (vicar at Kisenach), Spalatin (chaplain of the Elec 
tor Frederick), Lohr (prior of the Auu iistinian Convent at Erfurt), John 
Lani,v, Scheiirl, and others. They are printed in Latin in Loscher s /. /- 
orrnati<>iis-A<-tii, vol. I. 7 . -"-S-J<i; in De \\ .-ttc s edition of Lutfur x llr nfi , 
I. l-^>-4: rjerman translation in ^^ T alch. vol. XXI. The la<t of these ante- 
Reforination letters is directed to Archbishop Albreeht of Mainz, and dated 
from the day of the publication of the Theses. Oct. :J1, 1017 (DeWette I. ti7- 
70). The letters begin with the name of " Jesus." 



30. The Sale of Incluljences. 

ST. PETER S DOME is at once the glory and the shame of 
papal Rome. It was built over the bones of the Galilsean 
fisherman, with the proceeds from the sale of indulgences 
which broke up the unity of Western Christendom. The 
magnificent structure was begun in 150G under Pope Julius 
II., and completed in 1G2G at a cost of forty-six millions 
scudi, and is kept up at an annual expense of thirty thou 
sand scudi (dollars). 1 

Jesus began his public ministry with the expulsion of the 
profane traffickers from the court of the temple. The Ref 
ormation began with a protest against the traffic in indul 
gences which profaned and degraded the Christian religion. 

The difficult and complicated doctrine of indulgences is 
peculiar to the Roman Church. It was unknown to the Greek 
and Latin fathers. It was developed by the mediaeval school 
men, and sanctioned by the Council of Trent (Dec. 4, 15G3), 
yet without a definition and with an express warning against 
abuses and evil ijains. 2 

1 On St. Peter s church, see the archaeological and historical works on 
Rome, and especially Ileinr. von Geyrmiller, Die Entwiirfe fur tfanct Peter 
in Ront, Wien (German and French); and Charles de Lorhac, Saint-Pierre 
ile Rome, illnxtre de ]>lux de 130 ymcitres xur bois, Rome, 1870 (pp. 310). 

2 The Council incidentally admits that these evil gains have been the most 
prolific source of abuses, " unde jjlurhna in Christiano popido abusuum 
cditxo Jl/Lc!t," and hence it ordained that they are to be wholly abolished: 
"omnino abolendos M.SC." (Schaff, Creeds of Christendom, II. 205 sq.) A 
strong proof of the effect of the Reformation upon the Church of Rome. 


In the legal language of Home, indulgentia is a term for 
amnesty or remission of punishment. In ecclesiastical Latin, 
an iwlnl jt ncv means the remission of the temporal (not the 
eternal) punishment of sin (not of sin itself), on condition 
of penitence and the payment of money to the church or 
to some charitable object. It may be granted by a bishop 
or archbishop within his diocese, while the Pope has the power 
to grant it to all Catholics. The practice of indulgences 
grew out of a custom of the Northern and Western barba 
rians to substitute pecuniary compensation for punishment 
of an ofl cnse. The church favored this custom in order to 
avoid blood.shed, but did wrong in applying it to rcl^/i mx 
offenses. Who touches mone\ touches dirt ; and the less 
religion has to do with it, the better. The tirst instances of 
such pecuniary compensations occurred in Kngland under 
Archbishop Theodore of Canterbury (d. <!t0). The practice 
rapidly spread on the Continent, and was used by the Popes 
during and after the crusades as a means of increasing their 
power. It was justified and reduced to a theory by the 
schoolmen, especially by Thomas Aquinas, in close connec 
tion with the doctrine of the sacrament of penance and 
priestly absolution. 1 

The sacrament of penance includes three elements, con 
trition of the heart, confession by the mouth (to the priest), 
and satisfaction by good works, such as prayer, fasting, alms 
giving, pilgrimages, all of which are supposed to have an 
atoning eilicacv. Clod forgives only the eternal punishment 
of sin, and he alone can do that ; but the sinner has to hear 
the temporal punishments, either in this life or in purgatory; 
and these punishments are under the control of the church 
Or the priesthood, especially the Pope as its legitimate head. 
There are also works of supererogation, performed by Christ 

1 Tlioinris Aquinas, Snmm-i TV"/.. Pars III. (Juri-st. LXXXIV.. J Sn- 
crninriitrt !>,,-,,;t,-nt;<i : ami in th<- Mippl.-nn.Mit to the; Thinl I iirt, giui-st. 
XXV. -XX VII., DC In<lnl i,-nti. 


and by the saints, with corresponding extra-merits and extra- 
rewards; and these constitute a rich treasury from which the 
Pope, as the treasurer, can dispense indulgences for money. 
This papal power of dispensation extends even to the departed 
souls in purgatory, whose sufferings may thereby be abridged. 
This is the scholastic doctrine. 

The granting of indulgences degenerated, after the time 
of the crusades, into a regular traffic, and became a source of 
ecclesiastical and monastic wealth. A good portion of the 
profits went into the papal treasury. Boniface VIII. issued 
the first bull of the jubilee indulgence to all visitors of St. 
Peter s in Rome (1300). It was to be confined to Rome, 
and to be repeated only once in a hundred years, but it was 
afterwards extended and multiplied as to place and time. 

The idea of selling and buying by money the remission of 
punishment and release from purgatory was acceptable to 
ignorant and superstitious people, but revolting to sound 
moral feeling. It roused, long before Luther, the indignant 
protest of earnest minds, such as Wiclif in England, Ilus 
in Bohemia, John von Wesel in Germany, John Wessel in 
Holland, Thomas Wyttenbach in Switzerland, but without 
much effect. 

The Lateran Council of 1517 allowed the Pope to collect 
one-tenth of all the ecclesiastical property of Christendom, 
ostensibly for a war against the Turks; but the measure was 
carried only by a small majority of two or three votes, and 
the minority objected that there was no immediate prospect of 
such a war. The extortions of the Roman curia became an 
intolerable burden to Christendom, and produced at last a 
successful protest which cost the papacy the loss of its fairest 

31. Luther and Tetzcl 

I. On flip Indulgence controversy: LUTHER S Works, WALCII S ed., XV. 
.}-\c>2; YVeiin. cd. 1. 22!)-:V24. LosciiKrt: Rcformations-Acta. Leipzig, 
1720. Vol. I. :}.V;-:>.>:). J. KAPP: XcJuinitlntz <lcs Tt tzclxche* Ablass- 
ki-nms. Leipzig, 172U. J UKG ENS : Luther, Bd. III. 460-580. KAIINIS: 


Die <L /">/., I. is 1 s<|q. KOSTI.IX, I. l.">3 sqq. KOI.DK, I. 126 sqq. Ou 
the Roman-Catholic side, JAXSSKX: (Jwhichtc, etc., II. 04 sqq.: 77 
sqq.: and An mt in> Kritik< i\ Freiburg-i.-B., 1S-S), pp. 0(-81. On the 
editions of the Theses, compare KXAAKK, in the Weimar ed. I. i^ ( .) 

EDW. UHATKK: Luther * 95 ThfSfn und ihre tloymenyesch. Voraussetzitnrien. 
Gottinireii, 1SS4 (pp. &>3). Gives an account of the scholastic doctrine 
of indulgences from Bonaventura and Thomas Aquinas down to Pricrias 
and Cajetan, an exposition of Luther s Theses, and a list of hooks on 
the subject. A. W. DIKCKIIOFF (of Kostock): 1)< / AlildsxxtrLit. l)<j- 
w.n j<i-li n:htUch ditrytsttllt. Gotha, iNSO (pp. 2C.O). 

II. < >n Tet/.el in particular: (1) Protestant biographies ami tracts, all very 
unfavorable, (</) Older works by G. II i:< IIT: Vita Jnh. Titzili. Wit- 
tenbcru . 1717. JAC. VOUFCL: Lvhcn <lca pdpstlichcn GnadenpraUijers 
mi l A tlintKlcriinnTH T<t^<l. Lt-ip/.i^. 1717, 2d ed., 1727. ( ) .Modern 
\\orks: F. <f. IIor.MAXx: Lebeiutbeschreibuny /*.s A>>ltixKprt <U ./*-rx T< t- 
z>l. Lfip/i::, L s -t4. Dr. KAYSKK: Geschichtsriuellen iiber dm Aliluxx- 
l>rl. T.tzil krittxch ln-lcnclttH. Annaber^. ls77 (pp. 20). Dr. FI:UI>. 
KOKNKU: Tftzi-l, dcr Ahlaxmn-cdl jcr, etc. Frankenberg-i.-S. 1SSO (pp. 
1"):); chiefly against Grone). Compare also BKATKK and DIKCKJIOFF, 
quoted alioVf. 

(2) Roman-Catholic vindications of Tetzel by VAL. GuiiXE (Dr. Th.): 
T> fz>( iuxl Littln-r. uili r Li-hnix /cm-h. nwl W-rhtfi-rtiijuw) d< N Ablti**- 
l>r> H(ii r.s and Intji/ixilorx Dr. Jofi. Tetzel auft dem Predigerorden. Soest 
un.l Olpe, l.s.-,:{. I d fd. isuo (pp. L :]7). E. KOLIU-:: / . Jnh. T>tz>l. 
E tn Lrbtnxbilild ,,! kUml. Vollfi- yi iddnn-t. Steyl. ISS J (pp. .IS, based 
on (iniiifj. K. \V. HKKMAXX: ./"//. T<tz<l, <l<r ;/ay/.s//. Abln^ttn-ili irr. 
Frankf.-a.-M., ^ u- Anil, iss:} (pj>. !.">_ ). JAXSSKX: An UK in<- }\rilik< r, 
p. 7:; sq. G. A. MKIJKK, ( )nl. Pried. (Dominican): Johann Tctzal, Ajlutit- 
jjrediker en inquiaiteur. Kvne yexchiedkundiye xtu<li< . I tn-clit, l>s."> 
(pp. 1"> ). A calm and moderate vindication of Tet/.el, with the admis 
sion ([>. 1:57) that the last word on the question has not yet been spoken, 
anil that we must wait for the completion of the lic iestd of Leo X. and 
other authentic publications now issuing from the Vatican archives by 
direction of Leo XIII. But the main facts are well established. 

The rebuilding of St. Peter s Church in Rome furnished an 
occasion for the periodical exercise of the papal power of 
granting indulgences. .Julius II. and Leo X., two of the 
most worldly, avaricious, and extravagant Popes, had no 
scruple to raise funds for that object, and incidentally for 

150 TUP: GERMAN REFORMATION. A.I>. 1517 TO 1530. 

their own aggrandizement, from the traffic in indulgences. 
Both issued several bulls to that effect. 1 

Spain resisted the introduction of this traffic under the 
influence of Cardinal Xiniencs, a devout Catholic. In Eng 
land and France the kings prevented it. Hut Germany, under 
the weak rule of Maximilian, yielded to the papal domination. 

Leo divided Germany into three districts, and committed 
in 1515 the sale for one district to Albrecht, Archbishop of 
Mainz and Magdeburg, and brother of the Elector of Bran 
denburg. 2 

This prelate (born June 28, 1400, died Sept. 24, 1545), 
though at that time only twenty-live years of age, stood 
at the head of the German clergy, and was chancellor of the 
German Empire, lie received also the cardinal s hat in 1518. 
He was, like his Roman master, a friend of liberal learning 
and courtly splendor, worldly-minded, and ill fitted for the 
care of souls. lie had the ambition to be the Maecenas of 
Germany. He was himself destitute of theological educa 
tion, but called scholars, artists, poets, free-thinkers, to his 
court, and honored Erasmus and Ulrich von Ilutten with 
presents and pensions. "lie had a passionate love for 
music, "says an Ultramontane historian, "and imported musi 
cians from Italy to give luster to his feasts, in which ladies 
often participated. Finely wrought carpets, splendid mir 
rors adorned his halls and chambers; costly dishes and wines 
covered his table. He appeared in public with great pom}); 
he kept a body-guard of one hundred and fifty armed 
knights; numerous courtiers in splendid attire followed him 
when he rode out; he was surrounded by pages who were to 
learn in his presence the refinement of cavaliers." The same 
Roman-Catholic historian censures the extravagant court of 

1 Sec (ho papal donunrnts in Pallavicini, in Losohor (I. 300-383), and 
WnlHi. /.. N \Virk> . XV. :;i:] sqq. Compare GieseltT, IV. 21 sq. (Xe\v York 
ed. ); TTorcrenrothor s Rri/rstrt Lrnnitt A . (1SS4 sqq.). 

J. May: tier Kurfurxt Al>>r<rht II. rou Mainz, Miinchen, 1875, 2 vols. 

31. U THKi: AND TETZKL. 151 

Pope Leo X., \vliich set the example for the secularization 
and luxury of the prelates in Germany. 1 

Albrecht was largely indebted t> the rich banking-house 
of Filler in Augsburg, from whom he had borrowed thirty 
thousand llorins in gold to pay for the papal pallium. By 
an agreeim-nt with the Pope, he had permission to keep 
half of the proceeds arising from the sale of indulgences. 
The agents of that commercial house stood behind the preach 
ers of indulgence, and collected their share for the repayment 
of tin- loan. 

The Archbishop appointed Johann Tetzel (Die/) of the 
Dominican order, his commissioner, who again employed his 

Tetzel was born between 1450 and 1400, at Leipzig, and 
began his career as a preacher of indulgences in 1501. He 
became famous as a popular orator and successful hawker of 
indulgences. He was prior of a Dominican convent, doctor 
of philosophy, and papal inquisitor (Jicereticw pmuitutin tHfjui- At the end of 1517 lit- acquired in the I liiversity of 
Frankfurt-on-the-Oder the degree of Licentiate of Theology, 
and in January, 151 -S, the degree of Doctor of Theology, by 
defending, in two disputations, the doctrine of indulgences 
against Luther. 2 He died at Leipzig during the public debate 

1 .Tanssen, II. W, >>\: "Dux llofii-cxcn NO innnrhcr ji-intlirticn Furxti n 
DtlttHchlnnil*, inafH-xiHtilcw <lnn ili-n Krzbixchofii AUircrlit rtt Mniiiz, xtmxl in 
schrcifinlt iii l\ idcrxi>ruch init ilc/n ciiH a kirrhlichen \\ urilt ti ii ji rtt t <t>n>- <l> r 
Il tf LI-II X A ., uiit mint iit Anfwnml fiir *i> u t iiml J lii-ut^r im<l <tll<rlii 
in niii-ln Fi xti 1 rntHprnch norfi in ni ji-r <l<r Iietitiininun<i //. s- Ofurlntiijiti n 
tier Kirchc. I)> / \ i na lllicftniiif un<l r</>iii</k<it ycixtlicher IWrNtcnhq/ e in 
Dentachlitnd >jin<i ili< <li-x ri mtinrfii it //<*/ .s rnrttux, inul < rnt< rr war* /DH </t 
Icmtin ini t ilirft >/< w<*i n." IJ- <|iiot s (II. T ) Kinscr and Canliual Sadolft 
against (lit; abuses of iinlul^t iicf-i in tin- rvi^n of L-o X. Cardinal Hrr- 
gcnnitlit-r, in tlic dedicatory prrf.n-f to tin- /, "/ < " Li-mit* X. (Fuse. I. j>. 
ix). \\liilc dcfi iidini; this I OJM against tin- charge <f religions iiulilToreiico, 
ciMisurrs tin- accumulation of occlosiastical l^ in-lit-es by tin* same persons, as 
All>n-i lit, and the many abuses resulting tlierefnun. 

Ls-lier (I. .")(.">-. ) -j: 5) ijives both dissertation^, the first coMsistin.n of ! > . 
tlie second of 5() theses, and rails tlurin " 1 ruhi ii cuu </ n xtiitki lultn 


between Eck and Luther, July, 1519. He is represented by 
Protestant writers as an ignorant, noisy, impudent, and im 
moral charlatan, who was not ashamed to boast that he saved 
more souls from purgatory by his letters of indulgence than 
St. Peter by his preaching. 1 On the other hand, lloman- 
Catholic historians defend him as a learned and zealous ser 
vant of the church. lie has only an incidental notoriety, and 
our estimate of his character need not affect our views on the 
merits of the Reformation. We must judge him from his pub 
lished sermons and anti-theses against Luther. They teach 
neither more nor less than the usual scholastic doctrine of 
indulgences based on an extravagant theory of papal author 
ity. He does not ignore, as is often asserted, the necessity 
of repentance as a condition of absolution. 2 But he prob 
ably did not emphasize it in practice, and gave rise by 
unguarded expressions to damaging stories. His private 
character was certainly tainted, if we are to credit such 
a witness as the papal nuncio, Carl von Miltitz, who had the 

Xcfi&lcn </r.s Pnpx/thum*. lie ascribes, however, the authorship to Conrad 
AVimpina, professor of theology at Frankfurt-on-the-Oder, who afterwards 
published them as his own, without mentioning Tetzel, in his Anae(;)>ha- 
laioxiti errontin, etc., 1528 (Loseher, I. 500, II. 7). Gieseler, Kost- 
lin, and Knaake are of the, same opinion. Grone and Ilergenrother assign 
them to Tetzel. 

1 Mathesins, Myconius, and Luther ( JH .fcr 77Vn/,s ]Vio t<t, 1541, in the 
Krl. ed. XXVI. 51) ascribe to him also the blasphemous boast that he had 
the power by letters of indulgence to forgive even a carnal sin against the 
Mother of God ( wenu ( iii -r ijldcli die hell. Junyfrau Mdria, Gotten J/u// , , 
Iii ittf yeschwticht nmJ tienrlnciinfjprt"). Luther alludes to such a monstrous 
saying in The.s. 75, and calls it insane. Hut Tet/el denied and disproved the 
charge as a slander, in his l)i*i>. I. tut- 101 (" SubwunmiffSfiriis "<" j>rn-ilim- 
tui ihan reninriiiii IMPONLKK, nt N/ cyu/.s JUT impoftsihile Dei <j< netr n-em fiemju-r 
I li ijinetn violuwt . . . OIMO ACITAKI AC KKATIII .M srout M sAX<jnxKM 
SITIKK"), and in his letter to Milt it/, .Fan. .}], 151S. S-e Kostlin, I. 1<>() and 
7s5, K<irner and Kahnis. Kayser also (I.e. p. 15) gives it up, although 
he comes to the conclusion that Tetzel was " cui nnterHchiiinlcr mid sittm- 
loKcr A>>1 <ix!<i>ri ii;<i<-r" (p. 10). 

- In Thi.-scs 55 and 5(i of his first Disputation (1517), he says that the soul, 
after it is j>nr!ji< >l ("//////" jmr</(it(i, it<t. cine Scele </i-rci)tiut), Hies from purga 
tory to the vision of God without hinderance. and that it is an error to suppose 
that this cannot be done before the payment of money into the indulgence 
box. bee the Latin text in Loseher, I. G<) ( J. 


best means of information, and charged him with avarice, 
dishonesty, and sexual immorality. 1 

Tetzel traveled with great pomp and circumstance through 
Germany, and recommended witli unscrupulous effrontery 

and declamatory eloquence the indulgences of the Pope to 
the large crowds who gathered from every quarter around 
him. He was received like a messenger from heaven. 
Priests, monks, and magistrates, men and women, old and 
Voiing, marched in solemn procession witli songs, (lags, and 
candles, under the ringing of hells, to meet him and his fellow- 
monks, and followed them to thu church ; the papal hull on 
a velvet cushion was placed on the high altar, a red cross 
with a silken banner bearing the papal arms was erected 
before it, and a large? iron chest was put beneath the cross for 
the indulgence money. Such chests are still preserved in 
many places. The preachers, by daily sermons, hymns, and 
processions, urged the people, with extravagant laudations of 
the Pope s bull, to purchase letters of indulgence for their 
own benefit, and at the same time played upon their sym 
pathies for departed relatives and friends whom they might 
release from their sufferings in purgatory u as soon as the 
penny tinkles in the box." 2 

1 Aurh ftuttc cr zwd A / H /T." The letter of Miltitx is printed in 
Loscher, III. jo; in Wulrh, XV. sJ-j; ;md in Kayser, /.,-. 4 and .1. fet/el s 
champions try to invalidate the testimony of the papal delegate by charging 
him with intemperance, lint drunkards, like children and fouls, usually 
tell the truth; and when he wrote that letter, he was sober. l!e-ides, we 
have the independent testimony of Luther, who says in his hook against 
I):ike Henry of IJrnnswick ( H /V. r //<//<* I Hi/-*/, p. .")), tliat in 1.*>1T Tet/cl 
was condemned hy tlie Emperor Maximilian to he drowned in I he Inn at 
Innsbruck ("for his great virtue s sake, yon may well believe"), hut saved hy 
the Duke Frederick, and reminded of it afterwards in the Theses-contro 
versy, and that he confessed the fact. 

2 " > / .<//</ </</ I\h nni[i hit Kuxfot kllti it, 
//it Si i r */*(.s ih in Feyfeuer Hyrinyt." 

Mathesins and Johann Hess, two contemporary witnesses, ascrihe this 
sentenc.- (with sliuht verlal modifications) to Tet/el himself. Luther \\w\\- 
tions it in Theses 27 and 28, and in his book M "<</</ linns Wnrst (Erl. ed. 
XXVI. :>i. 


The common people eagerly embraced this rare offer of 
salvation from punishment, and made no clear distinction 
between the guilt and punishment of sin; after the sermon 
they approached with burning candles the chest, confessed 
their sins, paid the money, and received the letter of indul 
gence which they cherished as a passport to heaven. But 
intelligent and pious men were shocked at such , scandal. 
The question was asked, whether God loved money more 
than justice, and why the Pope, with his command over the 
boundless treasury of extra-merits, did not at once empty the 
whole purgatory for the rebuilding of St. Peter s, or build it 
with his own money. 

Tetzel approached the dominions of the Elector of Saxony, 
who was himself a devout worshiper of relics, and had 
great confidence in indulgences, but would not let him enter 
his territory from fear that he might take too much money 
from Ins subjects. So Tetzel set up his trade on the 
border of Saxony, at Jiiterbog, a few hours from Witten 
berg. 1 

There he provoked the protest of the Reformer, who had 
already in the summer of 151(3 preached a sermon of warn 
ing against trust in indulgences, and had incurred the Elec 
tor s displeasure by his aversion to the whole system, although 
he himself had doubts about some important questions con 
nected with it. 

Luther had experienced the remission of sin as a free gift 
of grace to be apprehended by a living faith. This expe 
rience was diametrically opposed to a system of relief by 
means of payments in money. It was an irrepressible coil 
ilict of principle. He could not be silent when that barter 
was carried to the very threshold of his sphere of labor. As 
a preacher, a pastor, and a professor, he felt it to be his duty 

1- JtitPrbo^ is now a Prussian town of about seven thousand inhabitants, 
on 1h<- railroad between llrrliu and Wittenberg, la the Nicolai church, 
Tetzel s chest of indulgences is preserved. 

32. THE NINETY-FIVE THESES. OCT. 31, 1">1T. loo 

to protest against such measures: to be silent was to betray 
his theology and his conscience. 

The jealousy between the Augustinian order to which lie 
belonged, and the Dominican order to which Tet/.el belonged, 
may have exerted some influence, but it was certainly very 
subordinate. A laboring mountain may produce a ridiculous 
mouse, but no mouse can give birth to a mountain. The 
controversy with Tetzel (who is not even mentioned in 
Luther s Theses) was merely the occasion, but not the cause, 
of the Reformation: it was the spark which exploded the 
mine. The Reformation would have come to pass sooner or 
later, if no Tet/.el had ever lived; and it actually did break 
out in different countries without any connection with the 
trade in indulgences, except in (Jcrman Switzerland, where 
Bernhardin Samson acted the part of Tetzel, but after 
Zwingli had already begun his reforms. 

32. The N uK tii-Jiv, Titles. Oct. 31, 1517. 
Lit. in :J1. 

After serious deliberation, without consulting any of his 
colleagues or friends, hut following an irresistible impulse, 
Luther resolved upon a public act of unforeseen conse 
quences. It may be compared to the stroke of the axe with 
which St. Boniface, seven hundred years before, had cut 
down the sacred oak, and decided the downfall of (ierman 
heathenism. He wished to elicit the truth about the burn 
ing question of indulgences, which lie himself professed not 
fully to understand at the time, and which yet was closely 
connected with the peace of conscience and eternal salva 
tion. He chose the orderly and usual way of a learned 
academic disputation. 

Accordingly, on the memorable thirty-first day of October, 
1")17, which has ever since been celebrated in Protestant (ier- 
manv as the birthday of the Reformation, at twelve o clock 
he allixcd (either himself or through another) to the doors 


of the castle-church at Wittenberg, ninety-five Latin Theses 
on the subject of indulgences, and invited a public discussion. 
At the same time he sent notice of the fact to Archbishop 
Albrecht of Mainz, and to Bishop Hieronymus Scultetus, to 
whose diocese Wittenberg belonged. He chose the eve of 
All Saints Day (Nov. 1), because this was one of the most 
frequented feasts, and attracted professors, students, and 
people from all directions to the church, which was filled 
with precious relics. 1 

No one accepted the challenge, and no discussion took 
place. The professors and students of Wittenberg were of 
one mind on the subject. But history itself undertook the 
disputation and defence. The Theses were copied, trans 
lated, printed, and spread as on angels wings throughout 
Germany and Europe in a few weeks. 2 

The rapid circulation of the Reformation literature was 
promoted by the perfect freedom of the press. There was, 
as yet, no censorship, no copyright, no ordinary book-trade 
in the modern sense, and no newspapers; but colportors, 
students, and friends carried the books and tracts from 
house to house. The mass of the people could not read, but 
they listened attentively to readers. The questions of the 
Reformation were eminently practical, and interested all 

1 The wooden doors of the Srhlosskirchv were burnt in 1700, and replaced 
in 1S.")S by metal doors, bearing the original Latin text of the Theses. The 
new doors are the gift of King Frederick William IV., who fully sympa 
thized with the evangelical Reformation. Above the doors, on a golden 
ground, is the Crucified, with Luther and Melanchthon at his feet, the work 
of 1 rofessor von Klober. In the interior of the church are the graves of 
Luther and Melanchthon, and of the Electors Frederick the Wise and John 
the Constant. The tichlosskirche was in a very dilapidated condition, and 
undergoing thorough repair, when I last visited it in July, ISSti. It must 
not be confounded with the Stctdtkirche of Wittenberg, where Luther 
preached so often, and where, in 1522, the communion was, for the first 
time, administered in both kinds. 

- Knaake (\Yeim. ed. 1. 2:-JO) conjectures that the Theses, as affixed, were 
wrltti u cither by Luther himself or some other hand, and that he had soon 
afterwards a few copies printed for his own use (for Agricola, who was in 
Wittenberg at that time, speaks of a copy printed on a half-sheet of paper); 

32. THE NINETY-FIVE THESES. OCT. 31, 1517. 157 

classes ; and Luther handled the highest themes in the most 
popular style. 

The Theses hear the title, " Disputation to explain the 
Virtue of Indulgences." They sound very strange to a mod 
ern ear, and are more Catholic than Protestant. They are 
no protest against the Pope and the Roman Church, or any 
of her doctrines, not even against indulgences, hut only 
against their ahuse. They expressly condemn those who 
speak against indulgences (Th. 71), and assume that the 
Pope himself would rather see St. Peter s Church in ashes 
than have it built with the flesh and blood of his sheep (Th. 
50). They imply belief in purgatory. They nowhere men 
tion Tet/.el. They are silent about faith and justification, 
which already formed the marrow of Luther s theology and 
piety. lie wished to be moderate, and had not the most dis 
tant idea of a separation from the mother church. When the 
Theses were republished in his collected works (1545), he 
wrote in the preface: "I allow them to stand, that by them 
it may appear how weak I was, and in what a iluctuating 
state of mind, when I began this business. I was then a 
monk and a mad papist (papista insanissimus^), and so sub 
mersed in the dogmas of the Pope that I would have readily 
murdered any person who denied obedience to the Pope." 

but that irresponsible publishers soon sei/cd ami multiplied them against his 
will. Jiir^eiis says (III. 4*0) that two editions were printed in Wittenberg in 
1*>17, on four ijuarti) leaves, and that tin; Berlin Library possesses two copies 
of the second edition. The Theses were written on two columns, in four 
divisions; the lir>t three divisions consisted of twenty-live theses each, the 
fourth of twenty. The (icrm. iu translation is from Justus Jonas. The Latin 
text is printed in all the editions of Luther s works, in Loscher s Acts, and 
in Uanke s l)cntx<-hc fJrm-fnrht*- (t .th ed.. vol. VI. s:5-S ,, literally copied from 
an original preserved in the Iloyal Library in Berlin). The semi-authorita 
tive (Jerman translation by Justus Jonas is ,Mven in Loscher, Walch (vol. 
XVIII.), and <). v. (Jerlach (vol. I.), and with a commentary by Jiirgens 
(Luther, III. 4x4 sqc|.). An English translation in Waco and Buchheim, 
PrinrifilcH of thi- Itcfurmatwii, London, ISS i, p. (5 sqq. I have- compared this 
translation with the Latin original as i;iven by Hanke, and in the Weimar 
edition, and added it at the end of this section with some, alterations, inser 
tions, and notes. 


But after all, they contain the living germs of a new theol 
ogy. The form only is Romish, the spirit and aim are Prot 
estant. We must read between the lines, and supply the 
negations of the Theses by the affirmations from his preced 
ing and succeeding books, especially his Resolutiones, in 
which lie answers objections, and has much to say about 
faith and justification. The Theses represent a state of 
transition from twilight to daylight. They reveal the mighty 
working of an earnest mind and conscience intensely occu- 

C> v 

pied with the problem of sin, repentance, and forgiveness, 
and struggling for emancipation from the fetters of tradition. 
They might more properly be called " a disputation to di 
minish the virtue of papal indulgences, and to magnify the full 
and free grace of the gospel of Christ." They bring the 
personal experience of justification by faith, and direct inter 
course with Christ and the gospel, in opposition to an exter 
nal system of clmrchly and priestly mediation and human 
merit. The papal opponents felt the logical drift of the 
Theses much better than Luther, and saw in them an at 
tempt to undermine the whole fabric of popery. The irre 
sistible progress of the Reformation soon swept the indul 
gences away as an unscriptural, mediaeval tradition of men. 1 
The first Thesis strikes the keynote: "Our Lord and Mas 
ter when he says, Repent, 2 desires that the whole life of 

1 Jiirgons (III. 481) compares the Theses to flashes of lightning, which 
suddenly issued from the thunder-clouds. Hundeshagen (in Piper s " Evan 
gel. Kulender" for 18.j!>, p. 157), says: "Notwithstanding the limits within 
which Luther kept himself at that time, the Theses express in many respects 
the whole Luther of later times: the frankness and honesty of his soul, his 
earnest zeal for practical Christianity, the sincere devotion to the truths of 
the Scriptures, the open sense for the religious wants of the people, the 
sound insight into the abuses and corruptions of the church, the profound 
yet liberal piety." Ranke s judgment of the Theses is brief, but pointed and 
weighty: " Wenn man diese Sdtze liest, xitht man, icclrfi cin kiihncr, yroftsar- 
ti<jer und fester Grist in Luther arbeitet. Die Gedauken s)>riihen Him /terror, 
u ie unter dem Ilammerschlny die Funken." Deutxche Gct*ch., vol. I. p. 210. 

2 Luther gives the Vulgate rendering of //trovo-f, pnnitentiam a</ite, do 
penance, which favors the Roman Catholic conception that repentance con- 

32. THIS MXKTV-FIVK THESES. OCT. 31, 1517. 159 

believers should be a repentance." l The corresponding Greek 
noun means change of mind (/u.rai>oia), and implies both a 
turning away from sin in sincere sorrow and grief, and a turn 
ing t<> (MM! in hearty faith. Luther distinguishes, in the sec 
ond Tin-Ms, true, repentance from the sacramental penance 
(i.e.. the confession and satisfaction required by the priest), 
and understands it to be an internal state and exercise of 
the mind rather than isolated external acts: although he 
expressly ailirms, in the third Thesis, that it must manifest 
itself in various mortifications of the ilesh. Repentance is a 
continual conilict of the believing spirit with the sinful Ilesh, 
a daily renewal of the heart. As long as sin lasts, there is 
need of repentance. The Pope can not remit any sin except 
by declaring the remission of (lod; and he can not remit 
punishments except those which he or the canons impose 
(Tlies. ~> and it). Forgiveness presupposes true repentance, 
and can only he found in the merits of Christ. Here comes 
in the other fundamental Thesis (02) : "The true treasury 
of the church is the holy gospel of the glory and the grace 
of (ind." This sets aside the mediieval notion about the 
overflowing treasury of extra-merits and rewards at the dis 
posal of the Pope for the hem-lit of the living and the dead. 

We have thus set before us in this manifesto, on the one 
hand, human depravity which requires lifelong repentance, 
and on the other the full and free grace of (iod in Christ, 
which can only he appropriated bv a living faith. This is, 
in substance, the evangelical doctrine of justification by 

sists in rt>rt;iin outward acts. Ilr first learned the true meaning of the 
Greek firrm- Hu a year later from Melanehthoii, and it \\ as to him like a 

" I)<)in in K.S ct iiKi iixfir Ho.x/ T t/c.s /.s ( lirixtnx rficpn<lo I ti iiitt iitinm 
Wjitf, t tr. [Matt. A: 17]. nnnum rilnin fl<l<lin>n jiniiitciitinin f.s.xr rulnit." In 
characteristic contrast, Tei/el begins his fifty counter Theses with a glorifi 
cation of the. Pope as the. supreme power in the church : " Dnn n<li xuiit 
Chrixtiuni, ex fjiio hi Kcrli-xin jmti xtun 1 iijm <><( xuitrrnui < I n xnln I)<o innti- 
tut t, ijund a ii>illr> jir<> hoi/tine, unc (t tutu niiitul tnuiidu iujt^nt rvvtrinyi nut 
umjilinri, e<l a solo Dvu." 1 


faith (although not expressed in terms), and virtually de 
stroys the whole scholastic theory and practice of indul 
gences. By attacking the abuses of indulgences, Luther 
unwittingly cut a vein of mediaeval Catholicism ; and by a 
deeper conception of repentance which implies faith, and by 
referring the sinner to the grace of Christ as the true and 
only source of remission, he proclaimed the undeveloped 
principles of evangelical Protestantism, and kindled a flame 
which soon extended far beyond his original intentions. 




In the desire and with the purpose of elucidating the truth, a disputation 
will be held on the underwritten propositions at Wittenberg, under the presi 
dency of the Reverend Father Martin Luther, Monk of the Order of St. 
Augustin, Master of Arts and of Sacred Theology, and ordinary Reader of 
the same in that place. 1 He therefore asks those who cannot be present, and 
discuss the subject with us orally, to do so by letter in their absence. In 
the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen. 

1. Our Lord and Master Jesus Christ in saying: " Repent ye" [lit.: Do 
penance, pocnitcnfimn tc./ite], etc., intended that the whole life of believers 
should be penitence [pcenitentiaui]. 2 

2. This word pa-nit enlia cannot be understood of sacramental penance, 
that is, of the confession and satisfaction which are performed under the 
ministry of priests. 

3. It does not, however, refer solely to inward penitence; nay, such in 
ward penitence is naught, unless it outwardly produces various mortifications 
of the flesh [vctrias canu .s mortificationes], 

4. The penalty [prs-na] thus continues as long as the hatred of self that 
is. true inward penitence [po-nitcntia vcra in tun] continues; namely, till 
our entrance into the kingdom of heaven. 

1 Tin.- German translation inserts here the name of Tetzel (icider Bruder Johnnn Tetzel, 
PreiJiger Or>lcnx), which does not occur in the Latin text. 

2 The first four theses are directed against the scholastic view of sacramental penitence, 
which emphasized isolated, outward acts ; while Luther put the stress on the inward change 

which should extend through life. As long as there is sin, HO lo 
tance. St. August in and St. TJernard spent their last days in dec 
tation over the penitential Psalms. Luther retained the Vulgate re 
yet the true meaning uf the Greek original (fjitrdvota, change o 
Theses vacillate between the liuiuish and the Evangelical view of 

g is there need of repen- 
> repentance and medita- 
idering, and did not know 
mind, conversion). The 

32. THE NINETY-FIVE THESES. OCT. 31, 1517. 1<J1 

f>. The Pope has neither the will nor the power to remit any penalties, 
except those which he has imposed by his <>\vn authority, or by that of the 
canons. 1 

( . The Pope has no power to remit any guilt, except by declaring and 
warranting it to have been remitted by (Jod: or at most by remitting cases 
reserved for himself: in which cases, if his power were despised, guilt would 
certainly remain. 

T. (iod never remits any man s guilt, without at the same time subjecting 
him, humbled in all things, to the authority of his representative the priest 

8. The penitential canons are imposed only on the living, and no burden 
ought to l>e imposed on the dying, according to them. 

.i. Hence the Holy .Spirit acting in the I npe does well fur us in that. 
in his decrees, he always makes exception of the article of death and of 

K). Those priests act unlearnedly and wrongly, who, in the case of the 
dyin^r, reserve the canonical penances for purtratory. 

11. ThM> tares about changing of the canonical penalty into the penalty 
of purgatory seem surely to have been sown while the bishops were asleep. 

12. Formerly the canonical penalties were imposed not after, but before 
absolution, as t->ts of true contrition. 

1:). The dying pay all penalties by death, and are already dead to the 
canon laws, and are by right relieved from them. 

14. The imperfect soundness or charity of a dying person necessarily 
brings with it great fear, and the less it is, the greater the fear it brings. 

1."). This fear and horror is sutlicient by itself, to say nothing of other 
things, to constitute the pains of purgatory, since it is very near to the horror 
of despair. 

It). Hell, purgatory, and heaven appear to differ as despair, almost despair. 
and peace .if mind [xi;-,irit<ix] differ. 

IT. With souls in purgatory it seems that it must needs be that, as horror 
diminishes, M> charity increases. 

is. Nor does it seem to be proved by any reasoning or any scriptures, that 
they are outside of the state of merit or the increase of charity. 

1 .) Nor does this appear to be proved, that they are sure and confident of 
their own blessedness, at least all of them, though we may be very sure of i;. 

2<>. Therefore the Pope, when he speaks of the plenary remission of all 
penalties, does not mean simply of all, hut only of those imposed by himself. 

21. Thus those preachers of indulgences arc in error who say that, by the 
Indulgences of the Pope, a man is loosed and saved from all punishment. 

22. For, in fact, he remits to souls in purgatory no penalty which they 
Would have had to pay In this life accor ling to the canons. 

> TMc thi-M* ri-iliirci. the- indulgence ti n HUT.- r.-ini-|..!i <,f thi- i-oHo-la-tlcnl piinMimeiil* 
Which refer only to thla life. Il destroy* the effect on j>uig;it>iy. Comimn- Tin-Kin 3. 


20. If any entire remission of all the penalties can be granted to any one, 
it is certain that it is granted to none but the most perfect, that is, to very 

24. Hence the greater part of the people nmst needs be deceived by this 
indiscriminate and high-sounding promise of release from penalties. 

25. Such power as the Pope has over purgatory in general, such has every 
bishop in his own diocese, and every curate in his own parish, in particular. 

20. [In the Latin text, I.] The Pope acts most rightly in granting remis 
sion to souls, not by the power of the keys (which is of no avail in this case), 
but by the way of suffrage \j>cr modum siiffrayii]. 

27. They preach man, who say that the soul ilies out of purgatory as soon 
as the money thrown into the chest rattles [ut jtictus minimus in cistctiu tin- 

28. It is certain, that, when the money rattles in the chest, avarice and 
gain may be increased, but the suffrage of the Church depends on the will 
of God alone. 

20. Who knows whether all the souls in purgatory desire to be redeemed 
from it, according to the story told of Saints Severinus and Paschal ? l 

30. No man is sure of the reality of his own contrition, much less of the 
attainment of plenary remission. 

31. Rare as is a true penitent, so rare is one who truly buys indulgences 
that is to say, most rare. 

32. Those who believe that, through letters of pardon, they are made sure 
of their own salvation, will be eternally damned along with their teachers. 

30. We must especially beware of those who say that these pardons from 
the Pope are that inestimable gift of God by which man is reconciled to God. 

34. For the grace conveyed by these pardons has respect only to the pen 
alties of sacramental satisfaction, which are of human appointment. 

35. They preach no Christian doctrine, who teach that contrition is not 
necessary for those who buy souls out of purgatory, or buy confessional 

3(J. Every Christian who feels true compunction has of right plenary re 
mission of pain and guilt, even without letters of pardon. 

07. Every true Christian, whether living or dead, has a share in all the 
bi iidits of Christ and of the Church, given him by God, even without letters 
of pardon. 

OS. The remission, however, imparted by the Pope, is by no means to be 
despised, since it is. as I have said, a declaration of the Divine remission. 

3D. It is a most difficult thing, even for the most learm-d theologians, to 
exalt at the same time in the eyes of the people the ample effect of pardons, 
and the necessity of true contrition. 

1 Tlicfo Kiintrt wi-rc reported to have prefenvd to suffer longer in purgatory than was 
neceoi-ary for their salvation, iu order that they might attuiu to the highest glory of the vision 
of God. 

$ 32. THE NINETY-FIVE THESES. OCT. 31, 1517. 13 

40. True contrition seeks and loves punishment; while the ampleness of 
pardons relaxes it, and causes men to hate it, or at least gives occasion for 
them to do so. 

41. Apostolical pardons ought to be proclaimed with caution, lest Un 
people should falsely suppose that they are placed before other good works 
of charity. 

4 J. Christians should be taught that it is not the mind of the Pope, that 
the Imying of pardons is to be in any way compared to works of mercy. 

4-i. Christians should be taught, that he who gives to a poor man, or lends 
to a needy man, does belter than if he bought pardons, 

44. Because, by a work of charity, charily increases, and the man becomes 
better; while, by means of pardons, he does not become better, but only 
freer from punishment. 

4."). Christians should be taught that he who sees any one in need, and, 
passing him by, u ives money for pardons, is not purchasing for himself the 
indulgence of the Tope, but the anger of (iod. 

4 5. Christians should be taught, that, unless tln-y have superfluous wealth, 
they are bound to keep what is necessary for the use of their own households, 
ami by no means to lavish it on pardons. 

47. Christians should be taught, that, while they are free to buy pardons, 
they are not commanded to do so. 

4*. Christians should be taught that the Pope, in granting pardons, has 
both more need and more desire that devout prayer should be made for him, 
than that money should be readily paid. 

40. Christians should be taught that the Pope s pardons are useful if 
they do not put their trust in them, but most hurtful if through them they 
lose the fear of (iod. 

50. [Lat. text XXV.] Christians should be taught, that, if the Pope were 
acquainted with the exactions of the preachers of pardons, he would prefer 
that the Basilica of St. Peter should be burnt to ashes, than that it >hould be 
built up with the skin, flesh, and bones of his sheep. 

51. [I.] Christians should be taught, that as it would be the wish of the 
Pope, even to sell, if necessary, the Basilica of St. Peter, and to give of his 
own to very many of those from whom the preachers of pardons extract 

52. Vain is th- hope of salvation through letters of pardon, even if a 
commissary nay, the Pope himself were to pledge his own soul for them. 

53. They an- enemies of Christ and of the Pope, who, in order that par 
dons maybe preached, condemn the word of (iod to utter silence in other 

A. Wrong is done to the Word of (iod when, in the same sermon, an 
equal or longer time is spent on pardons than on the words of the gospel 
[verhin rranyi //o .s]. 

55. The mind of the Pope necessarily is that if pardons, which art- a 


very small matter [quod minimum est], are celebrated with single bells, single 
processions, and single ceremonies, the gospel, which is a very great matter 
[quod maximum cxt], should be preached with a hundred ceremonies. 

50. The treasures of the Church, whence the Pope grants indulgences, are 
neither sufficiently named nor known among the people of Christ. 1 

57. It is clear that they are at least not temporal treasures; for these 
are not so readily lavished, but only accumulated, by many of the preachers. 

58. Nor are they the merits of Christ and of the saints; for these, inde 
pendently of the Pope, are always working grace to the inner man, and the 
cross, death, and hell to the outer man. 

59. ISt. Lawrence said that the treasures of the Church are the poor of the 
Church, but he spoke according to the use of the word in his time. 

00. We are not speaking rashly when we say that the keys of the Church, 
bestowed through the merits of Christ, are that treasure. 

01. For it is clear that the power of the Pope is alone sufficient for the 
remission of penalties and of reserved cases. 

02. The true treasure of the Church is the holy gospel of the glory and 
the grace of God [Tcr^s thesaurus eccleske eat sacrosanctum Ecanyelium 
yfaria 1 et yrat n.c Dei]. 

G .j. This treasure, however, is deservedly most hateful [mcrito odiosissi- 
mti* : der allerfeindseliyste und verhassteste], because it makes the first to 
be last. 

04. While the treasure of indulgences is deservedly most acceptable, be 
cause it makes the last to be first. 

05. Hence the treasures of the gospel are nets, wherewith of old they 
fished for the men of riches. 

00. The treasures of indulgences are nets, wherewith they now fish for 
the riches of men. 

07. Those indulgences, which the preachers loudly proclaim to be the 
greatest graces, are seen to be truly such as regards the promotion of gain 
[dcnn c.x r/t OKxen Geivinnst und Geniess tr&yt"]. 

OS. Yet they are in reality the smallest graces when compared with the 
grace of God and the piety of the cross. 

00. Bishops and curates are bound to receive the commissaries of apos 
tolical pardons with all reverence. 

7<>. But they are still more bound to see to it with all their eyes, and take 
heed with all their ears, that these men do not preach their own dreams in 
place of the Pope s commission. 

71. He who speaks against the truth of apostolical pardons, let him be the 
anathema and accursed [sit anathema ct malcdictus ; der sci tin Finch und 

1 This and the following theses destroy the theoretical foundation of indulgences, namely, 
the scholastic fictiou of a treasury of supererogatory merits of saiuts at the disposal of the 

32. THE NINETY-FIVE THESES. OCT. 31, loll. 105 

72. Dut he, on the other hand, who exerts himself against the wantonness 
and license of speech of the preachers of pardons, let him be blessed. 

7- 5. As the Pope justly thunders [Lat.,/u/mimil ; G. trs., mit l nyna<le uml 
dent li inn xrhtdyt] against those who use any kind of contrivance to the 
injury of the trutlic in pardons; 

74. Much more is it his intention to thunder against those who, under the 
pretext of pardons, use contrivances to the injury of holy charity and of 

7"). [XXV. | To think that papal pardons have such power that they could 
absolve a man even if by an impossibility he had violated the Mother of 
God, is madness. 

7<>. [I.] We affirm, on the contrary, that papal pardons [reni<i> paimlex] 
can not take away even the least venial sins, as regards the guilt [<jnodd 

77. The saying that, even if St. Peter were now Pope, he could grant no 
greater graces, is blasphemy against St. Peter and the Pope. 

7x \Ve aHirm, on the contrary, that both he and any other Pope bus 
greater graces to grant; namely, the gospel, powers, gifts of healing, etc. 
(1 Cor. xii. .) 

61). To say that the cross set up among the insignia of the papal arms is 
of equal power with the cross of Christ, is blasphemy. 

SO. Those bishops, curates, and theologians who allow such discourses to 
have currency among the people, will have to render an account. 

si. This license in the preaching of pardons makes it no easy thing, 
even f<;r learned men, to protect the reverence due to the Pope against the 
calumnies, or, at all events, the keen questionings, of the laity; 

82. As, for instance: Why does not the Pope empty purgatory for the 
sake of most holy charity and of the supreme necessity of souls, this being 
the most just of all reasons, if he redeems an infinite number of souls fur 
the sake of that most fatal thing, money, to be spent on building a basilica 
this being a slight reason? 

M. Again: Why do funeral masses and anniversary masses for deceased 
continue, ami why does not the Pope return, or permit the withdrawal of, 
the funds bequeathed for this purpose, since it is a wrong to pray for those 
who are already redeemed ? 

8-1. Again: What is this new kindness of God and the Pope, in that, for 
money s sake, they permit an impious man and an enemy of God to redeem 
a pious soul which loves God, and yet do not redeem that same pious and 
beloved soul, out of free charity, on account of its own need . 

Ki. Again: Why is it that the penitential canons, long since abrogated and 
dead in themselves in very fact, and not only by usage, are yet still redeemed 
with money, through the granting of indulgences, as if they were full of 

N3. Again: Why does not the Pope, whose riches are at this day more 


ample than those of the wealthiest of the wealthy, build the one Basilica of 
St. Peter with his own money, rather than with that of poor believers ? 

87. Again: Why does the Pope remit or impart to those who, through per 
fect contrition, have a right to plenary remission and participation ? 

88. Again: What greater good would the Church receive if the Pope, 
instead of once as he does now, were to bestow these remissions and parti 
cipations a hundred times a day on any one of the faithful ? 

89. Since it is the salvation of souls, rather than money, that the Pope 
seeks by his pardons, why does he annul the letters and pardons granted 
long ago, since they are equally efficacious ? 

IX). To repress these scruples and arguments of the laity by force alone, 
and not to solve them by giving reasons, is to expose the Church and the 
Pope to the ridicule of their enemies, and to make Christian men un 

01. If, then, pardons were preached according to the spirit and mind of 
the Pope, all these questions would be resolved with ease; nay, would not 

02. Away then with all those prophets who say to the people of Christ, 
" Peace, peace," and there is no peace. 

.):]. Blessed be all those prophets, who say to the people of Christ, "The 
cross, the cross," and there is no cross. 

04. Christians should be exhorted to strive to follow Christ their head 
through pains, deaths, and hells; 

05. [Lat. Text, XX. ) And thus trust to enter heaven through many tribu 
lations, rather than in the security of peace \pcr securitatem pads]. 


I, Martin Luther, Doctor, of the Order of Monks at Wittenberg, desire 
to testify publicly that certain propositions against pontifical indulgences, as 
they call them, have been put forth by me. Now although, up to the pres 
ent time, neither this most celebrated and renowned school of ours nor any 
civil or ecclesiastical power has condemned me, yet there are, as I hear, some 
men of headlong and audacious spirit, who dare to pronounce me a heretic, 
a-< though the matter had been thoroughly looked into and studied. But on 
my part, as I have often done before, so now too I implore all men, by the 
faith of Christ, either to point out to me a better way, if such a way has 
been divinely revealed to any, or at least to submit their opinion to the judg 
ment of God and of the Church. For I am neither so rash as to wish that 
my sole opinion should be preferred to that of all other men, nor so senseless 
as to be willing that the word of God should be made to give place to fables 
devised by human reason. 


33. Tln> Thest>9-Controvery. 151S. 

I:*^ >VT;/OH rom Ahlnsxuwl Gii(t<lc, printed in Fobruary, 1518 (Weimar 
ed. I. L i . .KMrt; and in Latin, ;J1T-. J J4); Kuw Erkldruii j tin- 7^ hit 
(tt titti-, \~>\^ (I. iMS-2"><, in Latin nmU r the title Instructio ]>r<> ( <)fts- 
sioiii i <-rntri!nt, p. li.~) 7 --*>.")) ; .l.s/ir/xri ic/r T.s t.s Oht liscv.v E< kii, 
M.ireh, !">1S (I. i>7S-:]lf>); Fi fUn-it <l> S> rmoiix i>iip.tlirf,t n Alilnxx nn-l 
(inn-It- ji n l, June, 151S, against Tet/.el (I. :js )-:} .: >); li sntntinnr* 
dix}>ut iti<>intin i lr iiulitl jf ntiiirutn rirhttc, August, lois, (le<lii-;ite(l to the 
Pope (I. ;") J J-<L S). Letters of LrriiKU to Archbishop Albivcht, .Spala- 
tin, and others, in De \VeLte, I. tT sq^. 

TKT/.I.I. S Anti-Tin 1 .* *, J scries, one of lud, the otlior of ">0 sentences, are 
print. -d in LMSCIIKU S lit-f. Acta, I. 50.V514, and r>lS-T>2:>. E< K S O e- 
//> ;. / .///. III. :):):{. 

On the .li- tails of the controversy, see.JriMJKXs (III. 470 sqq. ), KOSTI.IX (I. 17") 
sij l.), KOLUE (I. iJii .s<ii.), IJKATKK, and I)IK< KIKUT, as (juoted in $ :.;i. 

Tin- Tlioses of Luther were a trtict fur the limes. They 
souii(lel the trumpet of tlie Reformation. They found a 
hearty response with liberal scholars and enemies of monastic 
obscurantism, with German patriots longing for emancipation 
from Italian control, and with thousands of plain Christians 
waiting for the man of Providence who should give utterance 
to their feelings of indignation against existing abuses, and 
to their desire for a pure, scriptural, and spiritual religion. 
u llu, ho!" exclaimed Dr. Klerk, u the man has come who will 
do the thing. Reuchliii thanked (rod that "the monks have 
now found a man who will give- them sneh full employment 
that they will be glad to let me spend my old age in peace." 

1 The prophet if dream of the Elector, so often told, is a pot-tic fiction. 
Ko^tlin discredits it. I. 7S(1 s<|. The Elector Frederick divaim-d, in the 
uiuhl brfon- Lutlu-r allixed the Theses, that (iod snit him a monk, a true 
son of the Apostle Paul, and that this monk wrote something on the door of 
the c:istle church at Wittenberg with a pen which reached even to Koine, 
pierced the head and ears of a lion (Leo), and shook the triple crown of the 
Pope. Merle d Anl>i:;ne relates the dream at <;reat length as beim;. " beyond 
reasonable doubt, true in the essential parts." He appeals to an original 
Ms., written from the dictation of Spalatin, in the archives of Weimar, whi< h 
was pnbli>hed in 1S17. IJnt that MS., according to the testimony of Dr. 
Burkhardt, the librarian, is only a copy of the eighteenth century. No trace 
of such a dream can be found before Spalatin, in bis own writings 
and his letters to Luther and Melanchthon, nowhere refers to it. 


But, on the other hand, the Theses were strongly assailed 
and condemned by the episcopal and clerical hierarchy, the 
monastic orders, especially the Dominicans, and the univer 
sities , in fact, by all the champions of scholastic theology and 
traditional orthodoxy. Luther himself, then a poor, ema 
ciated monk, was at first frightened by the unexpected effect, 
and many of his friends trembled. One of them told him, 
" You tell the truth, good brother, but you will accomplish 
nothing ; go to your cell, and say, God have mercy upon me." 1 

The chief writers against Luther were Tetzel of Leipzig, 
Conrad Wimpina of Frankfurt-on-the-Oder, and the more 
learned and formidable John Eck of Ingolstadt, who was at 
first a friend of Luther, but now became his irreconcilable 
enemy. These opponents represented three universities and 
the ruling scholastic theology of the Angelic Doctor St. 
Thomas Aquinas. But they injured their cause in public 
estimation by the weakness of their defence. They could 
produce no arguments for the doctrine and practice of indul 
gences from the Word of God, or even from the Greek and 
Latin fathers, and had to resort to extravagant views on the 
authority of the Pope. They even advocated papal infalli 
bility, although this was as yet an open question in the 
Roman Church, and remained so till the Vatican decree of 

Luther mustered courage. In all his weakness he was 
strong. He felt that he had begun this business in the name 
and for the glory of God, and was ready to sacrifice life itself 
for his honest conviction. He took comfort from the counsel 
of Gamaliel. In several letters of this period he subscribed 
himself Martimi-s Eleutlierios (Freeman), but added, vielmehr 
Kuwlit (rather, Servant): he felt free of men, but bound 
in Christ. When his friend Schurf told him, " They will 
not bear it;" he replied, "But what, if they have to bear 
it?" He answered all his opponents, directly and indirectly, 

1 Albert Krautz of Hamburg, who died Dec. 7, Ml 7. Kostlin, I. 177. 


in Latin and German, from the pulpit and the chair, and 
through the press. He began now to develop his formidable 
polemical [tower, especially in his German writings. He had 
full command over the vocabulary of common sense, wit, 
irony, vituperation, and abuse. Unfortunately, he often 
resorted to coarse and vulgar expressions which, even in 
that semi-barbarous age, offended men of culture and taste, 
and which set a bad example for his admirers in the fierce 
theological wars within the Lutheran Church. 1 

The discussion forced him into a conllict with the papal 
authority, on which the theory and tratlic of indulgences were 
ultimately made to rest. The controversy resolved itself 
into the question whether that authority was infallible and 
final, or subject to correction by the Scriptures and a general 
Council. Luther defended the latter view; yet he protested 
that lie was no heretic, and that he taught nothing contrary 
to the Scriptures, the ancient fathers, the UM-umrniral coun 
cils, and the decrees of the Popes. He still hoped fora favor 
able hearing from Leo X., whom he personally respected. 
He even ventured to dedicate to him his Resolutione^ a de 
fence of the Theses (May 30, 1518), with a letter of abject 
humility, promising to obey his voice as the very voice of 
Christ. 2 

1 He said of Tetzel, that he dealt with the Bible "toiY <1ie Xfin mit >l<m If>r- 
/> -A " (as the hog with the meal-bag); of the learned Cardinal C ajetan, 
that he knew as little of spiritual theology as "the donkey of the harp;" he 
called Alveld, professor of theology at Leipzig, "a most asinine ass," and 
Dr. Kek " I)n <-k : " for which he was in turn styled lub Hx, Intm, etc. Such 
vulgarities were common in that age, but Luther was the roughest of the rough, 
as he was the strongest of the strong. His bark, however, was much worse 
than his bite, and Ix-neath his abusive tongue and temper dwelt a kind and 
generous heart. His most violent writings are those against Kmser (.!/< </ n 
Eiimrrxchcn Sti inhorlf), King Henry VIII., Duke Henry of Brunswick 
(\\ i<l<r HIIHH \\ iir*t), and his last attack upon popery as " instituted by the 
Devil" (1">4r>). of which Diillinger says ( Lntln r, p. 4<), that it must have been 
written ///< Ziixtttit li <b r Erhitz>ni(i <lnn-h fternimrhendc Getriinkc." 

3 " llfiitixuhnr I nt<r," he says in the dedication, " lirotttrutuni me p&likus 
tu i lii-ntitu linln nffrrn rum niniiilniN, ijmv mini i-t. hdhrii. ] ir\ti< <t. orr/</r, 
t, rvcoca, upjtrubu, ri i>rohu t ut pUtcuerit : toccm tnum i-u<-<m (. hrixti in 



Such an anomalous and contradictory position could not 
last long. 

In the midst of this controversy, in April, 1518, Luther 
was sent as a delegate to a meeting of the Augustinian 
monks at Heidelberg, and had an opportunity to defend, in 
public debate, forty conclusions, or " theological paradoxes," 
drawn from St. Paul and St. Augustin, concerning natural 
depravity, the slavery of the will, regenerating grace, faith, 
and good works. He advocates the theoloyia cruets against 
the tlieoloyia gloriae, and contrasts the law and the gospel. 
"The law says, Do this, and never does it: the gospel 
says, Believe in Christ, and all is done/ The last twelve 
theses are directed against the Aristotelian philosophy. 1 

He found considerable response, and sowed the seed of the 
Reformation in the Palatinate. Among his youthful hearers 
were Bucer (Butzer) and Brentz, who afterwards became 
distinguished reformers, the one in Strassburg and England, 
the other in the duchy (now kingdom) of Wiirtembcrg. 

34. Rome s Interposition. Luther and Prierias. 

J?. P. Silvestri Prieratis ordinis prcKdicatonim ct s. thcol. professorisceleher- 
riiui, s. palatii apofttolici mayixtri, in iwcpsumptuosas Martini Lutheri 
eonclwionex <le potestate papal dialogue. In Loscher, II. 13-39. Knaake 
(Werkc, I. 644) assigns the first edition to the second half of June, 1518, 
which is more likely than the earlier date of December, 1517, given 
by Loscher (II. 12) and the Erlangen ed. He mentions five separate edi 
tions, two of which were published by Luther without notes ; after 
wards he published an edition with his refutation. 

Ad Diidof/um Silresfri Prierati de potestate papae rcsponsio. In LOSCIIER, 
II. 300-434; Wdm. ed. L, 047-686, II. 48-56. German translation in 
WALCII, XVIII. 120-200. 

Pope Leo X. was disposed to ignore the Wittenberg move 
ment as a contemptible monkish quarrel ; but when it 

IP. president is ft loquenti* ar/noscam. Si mortem mcrui, mori non rccusabo. 
Domini cnim ext terra ct plenitudo ejus, qui cst benedictusin (Hecula, Amen, 
qui et te wvet in Klcrnum, Amen. Anno MDXVIII" Works (Weimar 
ed.), I. 520; also in De Wette, Hrirfc, I. 110-122. 

1 Weiin. ed., I. 350-376. Couip. Kostlin, I. 185 sqq. 

34. LUTHER AND PRIKRIAS. 1518. 171 

threatened to become dangerous, lie tried to make the Ger 
man monk harmless by the exercise of his power. He is 
reported to have said first, " Brother Martin is a man of 
line genius, and this outbreak is a mere squabble of envi 
ous monks;" but afterwards, ki lt is a drunken German who 
wrote the Theses ; when sober he will change his mind/ 

Three months after the appearance of the Theses, he di 
rected the vicar-general of the Augustiniau Order to quiet 
do\vn the restless monk. In March, 1~)18, he found it neces 
sary to appoint a commission of inquiry under the direction 
of the learned Dominican Silvester Mazzolini, called from his 
birthplace Prierio or Prierias (also Prieras), who was master 
of the sacred palace and professor of theology. 

Prierias came to the conclusion that Luther was an ignor 
ant and blasphemous arch-heretic, and hastily wrote a Latin 
dialogue against his Theses, hoping to crush him by subtile 
scholastic distinctions, and the weight of papal authority 
(June, 1">IS). He identified the Pope with the Church of 
Koine, and the Church of Koine with the Church universal, 
and denounced every departure from it as a heresy. lie 
said of Luther s Theses, that they bite like a cur. 

Luther republished the Dialogue with a reply, in which he 
called it k * sufficiently supercilious, and thoroughly Italian 
and Thomistic " (August, 151S). 

Prierias answered with a Replica (November, 1">1<S). 
Luther republished it likewise, with a brief preface, and sent 
it to Prierias with the advice not to make himself any more 
ridiculous by writing books. 

The effect of this controversy was to widen the breach. 

In the mean time Luther s fate had already been decided. 
The Roman hierarchy could no more tolerate such a danger 
ous man than the Jewish hierarchy could tolerate Christ and 
the apostles. On the 7th of August, lf>lS, he was cited to 
appear in Koine within sixty days to recant his heresies. 
On the 23d of the same month, the Pope demanded of the 


Elector Frederick the Wise, that he should deliver up this 
" child of the Devil " to the papal legate. 

But the Elector, who was one of the most powerful and 
esteemed princes of Germany, felt unwilling to sacrifice the 
shining light of his beloved university, and arranged a peace 
ful interview with the papal legate at the Diet of Augsburg 
on promise of kind treatment and safe return. 

35. Luther and Cajetan. Octoler, lolS. 

The transactions at Augsburg were published by Luther in December, 1518, 
and are printed in LOSCIIEU, II. 435-402 ; 527-551; in WAI/MI, XV. 636 
sqq. ; in the Wei in. ed., II. 1-40. Luther s Letters in DE \\ ETTE, I. 
147-1H7. Comp. KAIIXIS, I. 215-235; KOSTLIX, I. 204-23S (and his 
shorter biogr., Eng. trans., p. 108). 

Luther accordingly proceeded to Augsburg in humble 
garb, and on foot, till illness forced him within a short dis 
tance from the city to take a carriage. He was accompanied 
by a young monk and pupil, Leonard Baier, and his friend 
Link. He arrived Oct. 7, 1518, and was kindly received by 
Dr. Conrad Peutinger and two counselors of the Elector, 
who advised him to behave with prudence, and to observe 
the customary rules of etiquette. Everybody was anxious to 
see the man who, like a second Herostratus, had kindled 
such a flame. 

On Oct. 11, lie received the letter of safe-conduct; and on 
the next day he appeared before the papal legate, Cardinal 
Cajetan (Thomas de Vio of Gaeta), who represented the 
Pope at the German Diet, and was to obtain its consent to 
the imposition of a heavy tax for the war against the Turks. 

Cajetan was, like Prierias, a Dominican and zealous Thom- 
ist, a man of great learning and moral integrit} , but fond 
of pomp and ostentation. He wrote a standard commentary 
on the Summit of Thomas Aquinas (which is frequently ap 
pended to the Snmw .C)\ but in his later years, till his death 
(1534), perhaps in consequence of his interview vvith 


Luther, he devoted himself chiefly to the study of the 
Scriptures, mid urged it upon his friends. He labored with 
the aid of Hebrew and Greek scholars to correct the Vulgate 
by a more faithful version, and advocated Jerome s liberal 
views on questions of criticism and the canon, and a sober 
grammatical exegesis against allegorical fancies, without, 
however, surrendering the Catholic principle of tradition. 

There was a great contrast between the Italian cardinal 
and the German monk, the shrewd diplomat and the frank 
scholar ; the expounder and defender of mediaeval scholas 
ticism, and the champion of modern biblical theology; the 
man of church authority, and the advocate of personal 

They had three interviews (Oct. 12, 13, 14). Cajetan 
treated Luther with condescending courtesy, and assured 
him of his friendship. 1 Hut he demanded retraction of his 
errors, and absolute submission to the Pope. Luther reso 
lutely refused, and declared that he could do nothing 
against his conscience ; that one must obey God rather than 
man ; that he had the Scripture on his side ; that even Peter 
was once reproved by Paul for misconduct (Gal. 2: 11), and 
that surely his successor was not infallible. Still he asked 
the cardinal to intercede with Leo X., that he might not 
harshly condemn him. Cajetan threatened him with excom 
munication, having already the papal mandate in his hand, 
and dismissed him with the words: " Revoke, or do not 
come again into my presence." He urged Staupit/ to do his 
best to convert Luther, and said he was unwilling to dis- 

1 Luther received at first a favorable impression, ami wrote in a letter 
to CarlsUult, Ort. It (IXj \\Ytte, I. nil): " Tin- cardinal calls me constantly 
his dear son, and assures Staupiu that I ha<l no better friend than himself. 
... I would be the most welcome person here if I but spoke this one word, 
retoro. Hut I will not turn a heretic by revoking the opinion which made 
me a Christian : I will rather die, be burnt, be exiled, be cursed." After 
wards he wrote in a different tone about Cajetan, e.g., in the letter to the 
Elector Frederick, Nov. 10 (1. 170 <i i.), ami to Slaupilz, Dec. 13 (De Wette, 


pute any further with that " deep-eyed German beast filled 
with strange speculations." l 

Under these circumstances, Luther, with the aid of friends 
who provided him with an escort, made his escape from 
Augsburg, through a small gate in the city-wall, in the 
night of the 20th of October, on a hard-trotting hack, with 
out pantaloons, boots, or spurs. He rode on the first day as 
far as the town of Monheim 2 without stopping, and fell 
utterly exhausted upon the straw in a stable. 3 

He reached Wittenberg, in good spirits, on the first anni 
versary of his Ninety-five Theses. He forthwith published a 
report of his conference with a justification of his conduct. 
He also wrote (Nov. 19) a long and very eloquent letter to 
the Elector, exposing the unfairness of Cajetan, who had mis 
represented the proceedings, and demanded from the Elect 
or the delivery of Luther to Rome or his expulsion from 

Before leaving Augsburg, he left an appeal from Cajetan 
to the Pope, and "from the Pope ill informed to the Pope to 
be better informed " (a papa male informato ad papam ntdius 
informandum}. Soon afterwards, Nov. 28, he formally and 

1 " E .io nolo cimplius cum ftac bcstia loqui. Habet enim profnndns oculos ft 
mirabiles xpc<:ul<itioncs in rapitc stto." This characteristic dictum is not re 
ported by Luther, but by Myconius, Hist. Re/, p. I -}. Conip. Loseher, II. 477. 
The national antipathy between the Germans and the Italians often appears 
in the transactions with Homo, and continues to this day. Monsignor Euge- 
nio Oeeconi, Archbishop of Florence, in his tract Martino ].> !< ><>, Firen/e, 
1S8D, says : " Lntero non cniuirn <j C ituliani, e rjV it<tJi<nti non hnnno nt<d 
(imfo ne stiina no tut/ore per quest* uonio. II noxtro popolo, <<>{ .suo n<(tn- 
r<ile rrifrrio, lo hfi (jiudicato <la un pczzo." He declared the proposal to 
celebrate Luther s fourth centennial at Florence to be an act of insanity. 

2 In Bavaria; not Mannheim, as Kahnis (I. 2 JS) has it. 

3 Dr. Shnipitz" (says Luther, in his Table- Talk) " hatte inir ein Pferd 
i-(>rsrlt<(trt rnul gab mir den Hath, cinen dltf H Auxrcntcr zu iieltincn, <br die 
]! ( {/(. iriixxfr, iuid hdlf mir Langemantel (Rathsherr) dex Nachts dnrch cin 
klc in Pf(jrtb:in tier titadt. l)n cilte ich ohne Iloseu, tit iff cl, Sporti, und 
Schwert, und kttm bin gen Wittenberg. Den erst en Toy ritt irli adit ((iernian) 
Meilcn und wic icJi di s Abends in die Ilerberye kftni, wfir ich so )niide, s(iey f 
ini Stallu ab, konntc nicht stt!tcn,Jitl stracks in die titrcu." 


solemnly appealed from the Pope to a general council, and 
thus anticipated the papal sentence of excommunication. 
He expected every day maledictions from Rome, and was 
prepared for exile or any other fate. 1 He was already tor 
mented with the thought that the Pope might be the Anti- 
Christ spoken of by St. Paul in the Second Epistle to the 
The-salonians, and asked his friend Link (Dec. 11) to give 
him his opinion on the subject.- Ultimately he lost faith 
also in a general council, and appealed solely to the Scrip 
tures and Ins conscience. The Elector urged him to modera 
tion through Spalatin, but Luther declared : kl> The more those 
Romish grandees rage, and meditate the use of force, the less 
do I tear them, and shall feel all the more free to fight 
against the serpents of Rome. I am prepared for all, and 
await the judgment of God." 

33. Lutlcr and Miltltz. January, lolO. 

LoM iiKK, II. .")2-:.r,!> ; III. 0-21, 820-847. LfTiiEii s Wfrk>\ WALCH, XV. 
."us sqij. ; Wei mured., II. Wstjii. LeUrrs in DK WKTTK, I. 207 sq<j., 233 


Jon. K. SKIDKMANN: Karl ron Miltitz. . . . Eii>r cJn-onnL Untcrxnrhitnrf. 
Dresden, 1M4 (pp. 37). The respective sect ions in MAHIIKINEKE, 
I.MS (I. 2 .\ } sqq.), ;ind KOSTLIN (1. 238 siq. ami 2S1 s(i<j.). 

I>e! ore the final decision, another attempt was made to 
silence Luther by inducing him to revoke his heresies. 
Diplomacy sometimes interrupts the natural development 
of principles and the irresistible logic of events, but only for 
a short season. It usually resorts to compromises which 
satisfy neither party, and are cast aside. Principles must 
work themselves out. 

Pope Leo sent his nuncio and chamberlain, Karl von 
Miltitz, a noble Saxon by birth, and a plausible, convivial 

1 Letter to Spal.-itin, Nov. 2."> and Dee. 2. I)e We.Ue, I. 188 sqq. 

2 " Mittnni u<l te nni/<ta met is, nt riilrns, an rerte <livinein Antirhrintum 
ilium viruiii jiijrtn J dnlnin in Itmnunn cri>i rjnr<> : jit-jurem Turcia csse 
hodiv, i>nl<j me deinomitrare poiwe." Do \\ette, I. 1U3. 


gentleman, 1 to the Elector Frederick with the rare present of 
a golden rose, and authorized him to negotiate with Luther. 
He provided him with a number of the highest recommenda 
tions to civil and ecclesiastical dignitaries. 

Miltitz discovered on his journey a wide-spread and grow 
ing sympathy with Luther. He found three Germans on his 
side, especially in the North, to one against him. lie heard 
bad reports about Tetzel, and summoned him ; but Tetzel 
was afraid to travel, and died a few months afterwards (Aug. 
7, 1519), partly, perhaps, in consequence of the severe cen 
sure from the papal delegate. Luther wrote to his opponent 
a letter of comfort, which is no more extant. Unmeasured 
as he could be in personal abuse, he harbored no malice or 
revenge in his heart. 2 

Miltitz held a conference with Luther in the house of 
Spalatin at Altenburg, Jan. 6, 1519. He was exceedingly 
polite and friendly ; he deplored the offence and scandal of 
the Theses-controversy, and threw a great part of the blame 
on poor Tetzel ; he used all his powers of persuasion, and 
entreated him with tears not to divide the unity of the holy 
Catholic Church. 

They agreed that the matter should be settled by a German 
bishop instead of going to Rome, and that in the mean time 
both parties were to keep silence. Luther promised to ask 
the pardon of the Pope, and to warn the people against the 
sin of separating from the holy mother-church. After this 
agreement they partook of a social supper, and parted witli 
a kiss. Miltitz must have felt very proud of his masterpiece 
of ecclesiastical diplomacy. 

Luther complied with his promises in a way which seems 

1 lie was charged with intemperance, and is reported to have fallen from 
the boat in crossing the Rhine or the Main near Mainz in a state of intoxica 
tion, a. 1529. See the reports in Seidemann, I.e. p. 33 sqq. 

2 lie speaks generously of Tetzel in a letter to Spalatin, Feb. 12, 1519 
(I)e Wette, I. 223): " Doleo Tetzelium et salutem suam in earn necessitatem 
vcnixse . . . multo mullein, si posset, sercari cum honorc," etc. 

30. Lt TIIKi: AND M1LTFTZ. .FANt AIlV, 1510. 177 

irreconcilable with liis honest convictions and subsequent 
conduct. Hut we must remember the deep conflicts of his 
mind, the awful responsibility of his undertaking, the critical 
character of the situation. Well might he pause for a while, 
and shrink back from the idea of a separation from the church 
of his fathers, so intimately connected with his religious life 
as well as with the whole history of Christianity for fifteen 
hundred years, lie had to break a new path which became 
so easv for others. \Ye must all the more admire his con 

In his letter to the Pope, dated March o, 1;">19, he ex 
pressed the deepest personal humility, and denied that he 
ever intended to injure the Roman Church, which was over 
every other power in heaven and on earth, mini "///// Jesus 
Chr txt the Lrtl over <tU. Vet he repudiated the idea of re 
tracting his conscientious convictions. 

In his address to the people, he allowed the value of indul 
gences, but only as a recompense for the u satisfaction " given 
by the sinner, and urged the duty of adhering, notwithstand 
ing her faults and sins, to the holy Roman Church, where St. 
Peter and St. Paul, and many Popes and thousands of martyrs. 
had shed their blood. 

At the same time, Luther continued the careful study of 
history, and could lind no trace of popery and its extraor 
dinary claims in the first centuries before the Council of 
Niea-a. He discovered that the Papal Decretals, and the 
Donation of Constantino, were a forgery. He wrote to Spala- 
tin, March 13, 1~>19, k I know not whether the Pope is anti 
christ himself, or his apostle; so wretchedly is Christ, that is 
the truth, corrupted and crucified by him in the Decretals." 1 

1 !).> V\Ytt<\ I. 2.,0. 


37. The Leipzig Disputation. June 27 July lo, 1519. 

I. LOSCIIKK, III. 203-81 0. Luther s Work*, WAI.CII, XV. 054 sqq. ; Weim.ed. 

II. 153-435 (see the literary notices of Knaake, p. 15(5). Luther s letters 
to Spalatin and the Elector, in I)E WETTE, I. 284-324. 

II. Jon. K. SEIDEMA.XN: Die Lcipziyer J)ixpnt.<ition im Jnhrc 1510. 
Dresden and Leipzig, 1843 (pp. 1(51). With important documents (pp. 
93sqq.) The best book on the subject. Monographs on Crlxta<lt by 
JAGKU (Stuttgart, 185(5), on Eck by WIKDKMAXX (Regrnsburg, 18(55), 
and the relevant sections in MAIIHEINEKE, KAIINIS (I. 251-285), KOST- 
LIX, KOI. DP:, and the general histories of the Reformation. The account 
by RAXKE (I. 277-285) is very good. On the Roman side, see JAXSSEX, 
II. 8-3-88 (incomplete). 

The agreement between Miltitz and Luther was only a 
short truce. The Reformation was too deeply rooted in the 
wants of the age to be suppressed by the diplomacy of eccle 
siastical politicians. Even if the movement had been arrested 
in one place, it would have broken out in another; indeed, 
it had already begun independently in Switzerland. Luther 
was no more his own master, but the organ of a higher power. 
"Man proposes, God disposes." 

Before the controversy could be settled by a German 
bishop, it was revived, not without a violation of promise on 
both sides, 1 in the disputation held in the large hall of the 
Castle of Pleissenburg at Leipzig, under the sanction of 
Duke George of Saxony, between Eck, Carlstadt, and Luther, 
on the doctrines of the papal primacy, free-will, good works, 
purgatory, and indulgences. It was one of the great intel 
lectual battles; it lasted nearly three weeks, and excited uni 
versal attention in that deeply religious and theological age. 
The vital doctrines of salvation were at stake. The debate 

1 Eck was the chief originator of the disputation, and not Luther (as 
Janssen endeavors to show). Seidemann, who gives a full and authentic 
account of the preliminary correspondence, says (p. 21): " A .s /.s7 entxchieden t 
d<(xx E<-k <llf Dixpiitcttion fintnitj, inul zn tir znnach.vt. nnr mil Karlstadt* 
Abcr auch Luther s Absehcn ic<tr anf cine Disputation j/ertcWef." 

37. THE LEIPZIG DISI L TATIoX. .1 L N E-.IULV, 1~>11. 17 . 

was iii Latin, hut Luther broke out occasionally in his more 
vigorous (ierman. 

The disputation begun with the solemnities of a mass, a 
procession, an oration of Peter Mosellanus, De rat tone dt*/nt- 
tamh\ and the singing of ff/</, Crentnr Spiritus. It ended 
with a eulogistic oration by the Leipzig professor John Lange, 
and the Tc Deum. 

The first act was the disputation between Eck and Carl- 
stadt, on the freedom of the human will, which the former 
maintained, and the latter denied. The second and more 
important act began July 4. between Eck and Luther, chiefly 
on the subject of the papacy. 

Dr. Eck (Johann Mair), professor of theology at Ingol- 
stadt in Bavaria, was the champion of Romanism, a man of 
great learning, well-stored memory, dialectical skill, ready 
speech, and stentorian voice, but over-confident, conceited, 
and boisterous. He looked more like a butcher or soldier 
than a theologian. Many regarded him as a mere charlatan. 
and expressed their contempt for his audacity and vanity by 
the nicknames Keck (pert) and Geek (fop), which date from 
this dispute. 1 

Oarlstadt (Andreas von Bodenstein), Luther s impetuous 
and ill-balanced friend and colleague, was an unfortunate 
debater." lie had a poor memory, depended on his notes, got 
embarrassed and confused, and furnished an easy victory to 
Eck. It was ominous, that, on entering Leipzig, his wagon 
broke down, and he fell into the mud. 

Luther was inferior to Eck in historical learning and flow 
ing Latinity, but surpassed him in knowledge of the Bible, 
independent judgment, originality, and depth of thought, 
and had the law of progress on his side. While Eek looked 
to the fathers, Luther went back to the grandfathers: he 
ascended from the stream of church history to the fountain 

1 As he romjilaiiie.l twenty year- later: see Seidcmann, p. 80. 

2 Luther c.ills him an inj > (i>-;.ii,H //* <lijn(t<tt<ji; 

180 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A.I). 1517 TO 1530. 

of God s Word; yet from the normative beginning of the 
apostolic age lie looked hopefully into the future. Though 
pale and emaciated, he was cheerful, wore a little silver ring, 
and carried a bunch of flowers in his hand. Peter Mosel- 
lanus, a famous Latinist, who presided over the disputation, 
thus describes his personal appearance at that time: 1 - 

"Luther is of middle stature ; his body thin, and so wasted 
by care and study that nearly all his bones may be counted. 2 
He is in the prime ot life. His voice is clear and melodious. 
His learning, and his knowledge of Scripture are so extraor 
dinary that he has nearly every thing at his fingers ends. 
Greek and Hi-brew he understands sufficiently well to give 
his judgment on interpretations. For conversation, he has 
a rich store of subjects at his command ; a vast forest (.v/7m 
int/enz) of thoughts and words is at his disposal. lie is polite 
and clever. There is nothing stoical, nothing supercilious, 
about him ; and he understands how to adapt himself to dif 
ferent persons and times. In society lie is lively and agree 
able, lie is always fresh, cheerful, and at his ease, and has 
a pleasant countenance, however hard his enemies may 
threaten him, so that one cannot but believe that Heaven is 
with him in his great undertaking. 3 Most people, however, 
reproach him with want of moderation in polemics, and with 
being rather imprudent and more cutting than beiits a theo 
logian and a reformer." 

The chief interest in the disputation turned on the subject 
of the authority of the Pope and the infallibility of the 
Church. Eck maintained that the Pope is the successor of 

1 In a letter to Julius Pflug, a young Saxon nobleman. Mosellanus de 
scribes also f arlstadt and Eck. and the whole disputation. See Loscher, III. 
LM-J-iT,! (especially p. 2-17); Waleh, XV. 14 J:. ; Seidemann, 51 and . ( ,. I 
find the description also in an appendix to Melanchthon s Yitu Litthcri, 
Gottingen, 1741, pp. 3i -44. 

2 " Ut oiiniiti i>c<> o*sa liccat dimnntrn n. " Hut in later years Luther 
grew stout and fleshy. 

3 " I t hand fat-He crcdas, hominan lam ariluu sine nmnine Ditiim 


Peter, and the vicar of Christ by divine right ; Luther, that 
this claim is contrary to the Scriptures, to the ancient 
church, to the Council of Nica i a, the most sacred of all 
councils, and rests only on the frigid decrees of the 
Roman pontiffs. 

But during the debate lie changed his opinion on the 
authority of councils, and thereby injured his cause in the 
estimation of the audience. Being charged by Kck with 
holding the heresy of Hus, he at lirst repudiated him and 
all schismatic tendencies; but on mature rellection he de 
clared that Hus held some scriptural truths, and was unjustly 
condemned and burnt by the Council of Constance: that a 
general council as well as a Pope may err, and had no right 
to impose any article of faith not founded in the Scriptures. 
When J)uke (ieorge. a sturdy upholder of the Catholic 
creed, heard Luther express sympathy with the Bohemian 
heresy, he shook his head, and. putting loth arms in his sides, 
exclaimed, so that it could be heard throughout the hall, A 
plague upon it ! " 1 

From this time dates Luther s connection with the Bohe 
mian Brethren. 

Luther concluded his argument with these words: "lam 
sorrv that the learned doctor onlv dips into the Scripture as 
the water-spider into the water nay, that he seems to lice 
from it as the Devil from the Cross. I prefer, with all defer 
ence to the Fathers, the authority of the Scripture, which I 
herewith recommend to the arbiters of our cause/ 

Both parties, as usual, claimed the victory. Kck was 
rewarded with honors and favors by Duke (Jeorge, and fol 
lowed up his fancied triumph by efforts to ruin Luther, and 
to gain a cardinal s hat: but he was a!>o severely attacked 
ami ridiculed, especially by \Villibald Pirkheimer, the famous 
humanist and patrician of Niirnlxjrg, in his stinging satire, 

18:2 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A.D. 1517 TO 1530. 

" Tin . Polished Corner" l The theological faculties of Cologne, 
Lou vain, and afterwards (1521) also that of Paris, condemned 
the Reformer. 

Luther himself was greatly dissatisfied, and regarded the 
disputation as a mere waste of time. He made, however, a 
deep impression upon younger men, and many students left 
Leipzig for Wittenberg. After all, he was more benefited by 
the disputation and the controversies growing out of it, than 
his opponents. 

The importance of this theological tournament lies in this: 
that it marks a progress in Luther s emancipation from the 
papal system. Here for the first time he denied the divine 
right and origin of the papacy, and the infallibility of a gen 
eral council. Henceforward he had nothing" left but the 


divine Scriptures, his private judgment, and his faith in God 
who guides the course of history by his own Spirit, through 
all obstructions by human errors, to a glorious end. The ship 
of the Reformation was cut from its moorings, and had to 
tight with the winds and waves of the open sea. 

From this time Luther entered upon a revolutionary cru 
sade against the Roman Church until the anarchical dissen 
sions in his own party drove him back into a conservative 
and even re-actionary position. 

Before we proceed with the development of the Reforma 
tion, we must make the acquaintance of Melanchthon, who 
had accompanied Luther to the Leipzig disputation as a 
spectator, suggesting to him and Carlstadt occasional argu 
ments, - and hereafter stood by him as his faithful colleague 
and friend. 

1 " Do- cilr/rjiobeltr E/ k." 1 The book appeared first anonymously in 
Lai in, ErciH* ilctloltifiix. nt Erfurt, March, l.">20. Ilagen, in his tier Gcist 
/ / liifoniKit ion (Erlangen, 184. ]), I. p. 00 sqq., gives a good summary of 
tliis witty hook. Luther sent it to Spalatin, March 1\ 1520 (I)e Wette, 
I. 4i (i), hut expressed his dissatisfaction with this " mode of raging against 
Eck," and preferred an open attack to a hite. from behind the fence. 

2 This excited the aii _ r er of Eck, who broke out, " Tacc In, J hKijipc, ac 
tua stii lia c it ni, nc me per turbo,." 



38. Philip Mclanclitlion. Literature (Portrait). 
The b.-st Melanchthon collection is in the Koyal Library of Berlin, which I 
have consult. -d for this list (July, ISSTi). Tin- third centenary of Mrl/s 
death in IH;O, and tin- erection of his monument in Wittenberg, called 
furth a luri^ number of pamphlets aud articles in periodicals. 

xr. . < , , t , 


Mi:i.A.\ciiTiiox. (From a portrait by Diin-r.) 

Works of M.-lancbtlinn. The first .-d. ai>p and at Basel, 1.141, .1 vols. fol. ; 
another by Pr:rrr;i: (bis son-in-law I, Witicnbcr;:. M<;L -(;I. 4 \<ls. fol.. 
aL ain Idol. Selection of bis (irrmaii \\orksby KOMIK. Li ip/, IS-J .*- 
:5 , r, vols. * H.-^t cd. of njn rn ouni m (in tin- " < orpus Krl onnalonini ") 
by UKI.T-I IIM.II>I.I: and r,i.\i.-i.ii.. II.ill.-, l>:;4-5o, L S vols. 4\ The 

184 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A.D. 1517 TO 15-30. 

most important vols. for church history are vols. i.-xi. and xxi.-xxviii. 
The last vol. (second part) contains Annulets Vital (pp. 1-140), and 
very ample Indices (145-078). 

Add to these: Epistolw, Judicia, Consilia, Testimonia, etc., ed. II. E. 
BIXDSEIL. Halle, 1874. 8. A supplement to the u Corpus Reform." 
Compare also BIXDSEIL S Bibliot/ieca Melanlhonlana. Halis, 1808 (pp. 
28). CAIIL KRAUSE: Melanthoniana, Reyesten und Briefe ubcr die 
Beziehunyen Philipp Mel. zu AnJtalt und (lessen Fursten. Zerbst, 1885. 
pp. 185. 

II. Biographies of Mel. An account of his last days by the Wittenberg pro 
fessors: Brevis n/irratio cxponcns quo fine vltniu in Icrri* xtiam clauserit 
D. Phil. Mel. conscripta a professoribus academ/ai Viteberyensi*, qni 
omnibus qucu exponuntur interfucrunt. Viteb. 1500. 4. The same in 
German. A funeral oration by HEERBRAXD: Oratio in obitnni Mel. 
habita in Academia Tubing ensi die decima quinta Miiji. Vitebergoe, 
1500. * JOACUIM CAMEBAKIUS: Vita Mel. Lips. 1500; and other edd., 
one with notes by Strobel. Halle, 1777; one with preface by Neander 
in the Vit(V qnatnor Refonnatornm. Berlin, 1841. 

STIIOUEL: Melancldhoniitnn. Altdorf, 1771; Die Ehre Mel. ycrcttct, 1770; 
and other works. A. II. XIEMEYER: Phil. Mel. als Praiccptor Ger- 
munkv. Halle, 1817. Fit. Ai (;. Cox : Life of Mel., comprising an ac 
count of the Reform. Loud. 1815, 2d ed. 1817. G. L. Fis. DELBRUCK: 
Pit. Mel. der Gltiubenslehrcr. Bonn, 1820. HEYD: Mel. und Tiibinyen, 
1512-18. Tiib. 1809. *FK. GALLE: Characteristik Melanchth. als Theol. 
und Endc. seine.* Lchrbeyr. Halle, 1840. *Fn. MATTIIES: Pit. Mel. Sein 
Leben u. U irken aus den Quellen. Altenb. 1841. 2d ed. 1840. LED- 
DEKIIOSE: Phil. Mel. nachseincm aiisscren u. inneren Leben darycstellt. 
Heidelberg, 1847 (English translation by Dr. KKOTEL. Phila. 1855). 
By the same: 7)c.s Leben des Phil. Mel. fur das Volk. Barmen, 1858. 
*MoR. MEI-JU:H: Phil. Mel. s Leben. Leipzig u. Dresden, 1800. 2d ed. 
1860. II KITE: Phil. Mel. der Lchrer Dcutschlands. Marburg, 1800. 
*CARL .SCIIMIDT: Philipp Melanchthons Leben und aiw/eu uhlte 
Kchriftrn. Elberfeld, 1801 (in the " Reformatoren der Luth. Kirche"). 
*IlERRLiN(iER: Die Theoloyie Mel s in ihrer ycschichtl. E>itu:i<:klnny. 
Gotha, 1S70. 

III. Brief sketches, by NEAXDER, in Piper s " Evang.-Kalender " for 1851. 
By XITZSCII, in the "Deutsche Zeitschrift fiir chrisll. Wissenschaft," 
ls55. Is. AUG. DOIIXER: Zum dreihundertjahriyen Gedachtni. de Todes 
Mi-lnnchthons, 18(50. YOLUEDIXO: Mel. wle er liebtc und lebte (Leipz. 
18(50). KAIIXIS: Rr<1c znm GcdiirhtnisH Mel. s (Leipz. IS(iO). WOIIL- 
FAIIIJT: Phil. Md. (Leipzig, 1800). \V. TuiLo: Mel. im Dlcnutc der heil. 
Srhrift (Bc-rlin, 1800). PAUL PRESSEL: Phil. Mel. Eln er<m<i. Lebens- 
bild (Stuttg. IH;O). Ecxtreden znr Erinneruny an de>i SOOjaJiriycn Todcs- 
tay Phil. Mel. s und bel der Grundsteinleyuny zu desscn Denknial zu 


Wittenberg, herausyeg. ron LOMMATZCII (Wittenb. isoo). HKXKE: Dds 
JY/-/ifW//i/*.s Ln1ln-rx iiml M*l. zu dn<in<l<T (Miirburg. ISOO), and Mi-moria 
11. I /nl. Md. (Marburg 1*00). An. PLANCK: Md. I r<t rector Venn. 
(Xordlingen, ISOO). TOLLIN: I ll. Md. nn<( Midi. St-rrd. Elm- (Jttel- 
Ifuxtinlii (Berlin, 1S7(). LAXDKKKK: Md., in Iler/og 1 and Ilerzog 2 
ix. 471-.~ L ~, revised by IlKRRLiMiKR. TuiKKx n : Md. (Augsburg, 
1*77. and New York, Am. Tract Soc. 1S80). LLTIIAHDT: Mdnnchthon N 
Ai-i"-it<-ii i>n Gthli-ti d<r Mural (Loipz. 1884). WAJKX.MANX: 1 h. Md. 
(in the "Alli^ in. Dt iitschc IJiographic ). PAI LSKN in "<;csrb. dcs 
pt-lfhrtrn rntrrridits (Leipz. 18S."). pp. :U si|(|.). SCHAFI-- in .S7. iuntin t Alvlunchthon, Xcundcr (New York and London, 1SSO. pp. 

IV. ( >n Mi-l. s Lor/, see STKODEL: Litcrarycxdi, von / //. Md. x ldx theo- 
lo jl r-;.s. Altdorf and Xiirnberg, 1770. PLITT: Md.unclttliunn Loci in 
ikrir Ur jLxtalt. Erlangen, 1804. 

30. Melanchtlion & Training. 

On the twenty-fifth day of August, lolS, ten months after 
the publication of Luther s Theme ^ when he most needed a 
learned helper in his work, and two years before the papal 
excommunication, a modest but highly gifted youth arrived in 
Wittenberg, as professor of philosophy and (ireek literature, 
who was predestinated to become the second leader of the 
Lutheran Reformation, and the k * Teacher of (in-many." 1 

Philip Melunchthon, or Melanthon, 2 was born of honest 
and pious parents, at IJretten in the Palatinate, Feb. 10, 
1407, fourteen years after Luther, twelve years before Cal- 

i Prrfreptor Germfinlrr." Lntlior was the " Rcfortnntor Gennan/ee." 
Tbis is (he shortest expression of the difTerenee of the t\vo. 

2 He sp-ilrd his name Mdimdillinn (from //. and \Hui-). but after ITiS! 
Md in/fifin, for the sake of brevity :ind euphony. Bretschneiiler and I!ind- 
soil have adopted the latter form: but the older is more usual, and preserves 
the etymology. His original name was Si-hirm-zenl. i.e., /> / / -k< nrf/i, wliieh 
his k rand-nnele Keueldin clianu fd. aeeordinii to the literary t a-diion of the 
a.?e, into the correspond ini, (ir.-.-k. See Forstemann, l)i< *i-/,tr<irzi i-il<\ mlcr 
Zimainiiienntellnii<i /</ .\,tr!,,-;dit< n ii x-r MdunditlnnS s (i> xchh ,!,!, in the 
"Tbeol. Studien nnd Kritiken" for is:;o. p. ll .t s<j.|. J). Fr. Strauss con 
jectures that Mel. s original name was not /< imr~i nl. but Sdiwnrzrrt or 
Schictirzi r, i.e., IH n-l,-, and ha- nothing to do with the earth, any more than 
kindred names derived from color, as Weisscrt. (Jrunert. (Jclbert. ((i< tiin- 
mdti S.-tn-ijt, , c,|. liy Xeller. vol. ii. :;:;7, and I lridi r. llntt>-n, p. IS.) lint 
ReuchJin must have known better. 


vin. In his theology, as in age, lie stood a mediator between 
the two. His father was a skillful manufacturer of arms 
for the Elector Philip and the Emperor Maximilian I. ; his 
mother a niece of the celebrated Hebraist Keuchlin, who pre 
sented him with a Bible, and directed his studies at Pforz 
heim, Heidelberg, and Tubingen. 

He was one of those rare scholars who mature early, and 
yet continue their productive labors in undiminished vigor 
to old age. He mastered all the branches of knowledge, 
especially classical philology, and graduated as Master of 
Arts in Tubingen, Jan. 25, 1514, when only seventeen years 
of age. lie wrote and spoke Greek and Latin better than 
his native German, and composed poetry in those languages. 
He began his public career in the University of Tubingen, as 
lecturer on ancient literature, and editor of the comedies of 
Terence (151(3), and translator of Aratus, and Plutarch 
(1518). lie made preparations for a correct edition of Aris 
totle, who had been "mutilated, barbarously translated, and 
become darker than the sibylline oracles," though he never 
carried it out. In 1518 he published a Greek grammar, which 
passed through many editions. 

Erasmus, the iirst scholar of his age, and best judge of lit 
erary merit, foresaw the future significance of this precocious 
youth, and paid him, in 1516, a glowing tribute of admira 
tion for eminence in the classics, acumen in demonstration, 
purity and elegance of style, rare learning and comprehen 
sive reading, tenderness and refinement. 1 Melanchthon wrote 

1 In his Com. on ThcswL (Annotat. in N. Test., Basel, lol">, p. 5.">): "At 
Deum immortalem, fjnain non span de se pr&bet admodum ctiani (idolesccns 
ac i>ait puff PhilipptiH (lie Nclanclithon, utraqne literal nr a )>ene ex wquo 
siiKpiciendna [not suscipiendii8]\ Quod inventionix acumen ! Qua scrmonis 
2)ii) itax \_ct ele<janiia~\\ Quanta reconditarutn re nun memorial Qitam 
varla lectio! (Jnani rerecundlce reyiaxjne prorxnx in<lf>l!x fentivitaft ! ft 
Erasmus dates the preface of these Anmttationex from 1~>1.">, but they were 
not published till l.~>l(5, together with the first edition of his Greek Testa 
ment. In the second ed. of the Atuiot., I>as. 1") % 2D, and in tlie ed. of 1522, as 
well as in vol. vii. of his Opera, 13as. 104U, the eulogy on Alelancktlioii is 


a eulogy on Erasmus in (Jreek verse (September, 1510), and 
never forgot his eminent services to classical and biblical 
studies. A modern Catholic historian, notwithstanding his 
doctrinal objections, calls Melanchthon k *the most brilliant 
phenomenon which proceeded from the Erasmian school, 
equal to his master Erasmus in many respects, superior to 
him in others. Riches of knowledge, the choicest classical 
culture, facility of expression, versatility of composition, 
rhetorical fullness and improvisation, united to untiring in 
dustry, this rare combination of excellences fitted him 
above all others for the literary leadership of the mighty 
movement." ] 

Melanehthon embraced theology in his encyclopaedic stud 
ies, without having the priesthood in view, but was rather 
repelled by the dry scholasticism which then prevailed in 
Tubingen, lie quietly and naturally grew into his theo 
logical position, without violent changes and struggles like 
those of Luther. His experience was that of John rather 
than of Paul. lie had received a pious training at home; 
he delighted in public worship, the lives of saints, and espe 
cially in the careful study of the Bible, which accompanied 
him even on his walks. His eyes were opened to the abuses 
in the Church, and the need of reform. His classical tastes 
and his intimacy with Heiichlin, the noble champion of He 
brew learning against monkish ignorance and obscurantism, 
predisposed him in favor of the evangelical movement which 
had broken out at Wittenberg a few months before he left 

omitted. (I examined thoso various editions in the Tlnynl Library of Berlin, 
July, !** , t<> verify conflict ini; and inaccurate statements of historians.) 
In a letter ID Melanchtlnin, April L L . 1"1! . Erasmus shows a little sensitive 
ness, hut still professes ijreal admiration fur him, and hopes that he may 
more than fulfill tint most favorable expectation which < Germany had formed 
of his yen ins and piety, "(, orp lief.," 1. TI! s|.; romp. Mel. s letter to Eras 
mus. / //. f-.l. :, . M|. 

1 Dr. Dollinu cr, />/> Krt vniKttivn (IS-Jii), vol. 1. :J41. 


His fame spread so rapidly that he received calls from the 
universities of Ingolstadt, Leipzig, and Wittenberg. lie con 
cluded to go to Wittenberg as professor of Greek, at the 
modest salary of one hundred guilders. This salary was 
doubled in 1520, but Luther and the Elector had diiliculty 
to induce him to accept. 1 

Reuchlin had strongly recommended him to the Elector 
Frederick. u I know no man among the Germans," he 
wrote, "who is superior to Master Philip Schwarzerd except 
Erasmus Roterodamus, who is a Hollander, and surpasses us 
all in Latin. 2 He applied to his nephew, in prophetic 
anticipation, the promise of God to Abraham, Gen. 12: 1-3. 3 

So far the aged scholar did great service to the cause of the 
Reformation. But when it threatened to end in a split of 
the Church, Ivcuchlin withdrew, like Erasmus and Staupitz. 
He was afraid of being called a heretic. He moved from 
Stuttgart to Ingolstadt in 1519, and lived for a while in the 
house of Dr. Eck. lie even tried to draw Melanchthon 
from Wittenberg to Ingolstadt, but in vain ; he recalled his 
promise to bequeath to him his valuable library, and gave it 
to his native city of Pforzheim. The pestilence drove him 
from Bavaria back to Wiirtemberg; he taught Greek and 
Hebrew grammar at Tubingen in 1521, and died at Stuttgart 
in the communion of the Roman Church, June 30, 1522. 4 

1 Luth. ad Principem Elertoivm. Feb. 0, 152<>: " Eft luit E. K. F. G. in 
dcr Ordnnii i dcr Unircrsital. bcfclilcn Ittstn/n M. Philippwn 200 Ji. jii/irlich 
zu f/i bcn. j^uii hcNchicert sicJt dcr jMensch, solchcx ZH neluncu ; di iin well cr 
nlrlit tcnnuij .so stt if und 1(JL<jllch In d> i r Schrift zu li-scn, moclif er -s uicht rnit 
(ju/ciu Gewissen neltmen," etc. 

- In a German letter to Frederick, dated July 25, 15 IS. See "Corp. 
Ileform., I- ; ; 5- 

3 lie wrote to him from Stuttgart, July 24, 1518 (ih ttL I. 32): " E /rcdere 
de term tint . . . ct m<(</n!fic(il>o noincn tunin, i rin<im Ix-ni dirtnx. JI(C 
GV /(f.x/.s xii. Itti iiilhl }D (i N(i</!t (inhnus, ilct xjn ro fiitiiruin de te, ii 
Philij>pc, inciiin i>i>ux ct incnin xolKtium." 

4 (ieiger, Jo/i. Hcnc/ilin, win Lchen und xeinc Wcrkc, Lcipz., 1871; 
Iloniwit/, Zitr l>lo<.ir<t[>liit mid (. orrcxixntdciiz J. llcni-ltliii x, \Vien, 1ST"; 
Strauss, L lrich r. Unftfii, Ilk. I. chap. 7 (p. 1^2 sqi^. of the 4th ed.); and 
Kliipfel, in ll-r/.og 2 xii. 710-724. 


40. MelancJitJion 9 Early Labors. 

Although yet a youth of twenty-one years of age, Melanch- 
tlion at once gained the esteem and admiration of his col 
leagues and hearers in Wittenberg. lie was small of stature, 
unprepossessing in liis outward appearance, diffident and 
timid. Hut his high and noble forehead, his line blue eves, 
full of lire, the intellectual expression of his countenance, 
the courtesy and modesty of his behavior, revealed the beauty 
and strength of his inner man. His learning was undoubted, 
his moral and religious character above suspicion. His intro 
ductory address, which he delivered four days after his arri 
val (Aug. -!), on u The Improvement of the Studies of 
Youth," J dispelled all fears : it contained the programme of his 
academic teaching, and marks an epoch in the history of 
liberal education in (iermany. He desired to lead the youth 
to the sources of knowledge, and by a careful study of the 
languages to furnish the key for the proper understanding 
of the Scriptures, that they might become living members of 
Christ, and enjoy the fruits of His heavenly wisdom. He 
studied and taught theology, not merely for the enrichment 
of the mind, but also and chiefly for the promotion of virtue 
and pietv. 2 

He at first devoted himself to philological pursuits, and 
dil more than any of his contemporaries to revive the study 
of (ireek for the promotion of biblical learning and the 
cause of the Reformation. He called the ancient languages 
the swaddling-clothes of the Christ-child: Luther compared 
them to the sheath of the sword of the Spirit. Mclanchthon 
was master of the ancient languages; Luther, master of the 

1 ])< ( orr nicntli* A lolesrcnfhnn Shi llix, in tin* "Corpus IN-formatorum," 
XI. I- ) s<j(|. SIT SHimitlt, /. . _". S |. 

- II<> \vroti- to his friiMiil < aim-i-ariii-i, Jan. L"J. l.Vj.~> ("Corp. I>Vf." I. 7i?li): 
1 Eyo tnifii itn i-nnsi iii* Mint, nun nli tni <> > cnnnin un<innin Tt 
nisi ut ritinn < im-n larciit. 1 

190 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A.D. 1517 TO 15-30. 

German. The former, by his co-operation, secured accuracy 
to the German Bible ; the latter, idiomatic force and poetic 

In the year 1519 Melanchthon graduated as Bachelor of 
Divinity ; the degree of Doctor he modestly declined. From 
that time on, he was a member of the theological faculty, and 
delivered also theological lectures, especially on exegesis. He 
taught two or three hours every day a variety of topics, includ 
ing ethics, logic, Greek and Hebrew grammar; he explained 
Homer, Plato, Plutarch, Titus, Matthew, Romans, the Psalms. 
In the latter period of his life he devoted himself exclusive 
ly to sacred learning. He was never ordained, and never 
ascended the pulpit ; but for the benefit of foreign students 
who were ignorant of German, he delivered every Sunday in 
his lecture-room a Latin sermon on the Gospels, lie became 
at once, and continued to be, the most popular teacher at 
Wittenberg. He drew up the statutes of the University, 
which are regarded as a model. By his advice and example 
the higher education in Germany was regulated. 

His fame attracted students from all parts of Christendom, 
including princes, counts, and barons. His lecture-room was 
crowded to overflowing, and he heard occasionally as many 
as eleven languages at his frugal but hospitable table. He 
received calls to Tubingen, Niirnberg, and Heidelberg, and 
was also invited to Denmark, France, and England ; but he 
preferred remaining in Wittenberg till his death. 

At the urgent request of Luther, who wished to hold him 
fast, and to promote his health and comfort, he married (hav 
ing no vow of celibacy to prevent him) as early as August, 
1520, Catharina Krapp, the worthy daughter of the burgo 
master of Wittenberg, who faithfully shared with him the 
joys and trials of domestic life. He had from her four chil 
dren, and was often seen rocking the cradle with one hand, 
while holding a book in the other. He used to repeat the 
Apostles Creed in his family three times a day. He esteemed 


his wife higher than himself. She died in lo">7 while he was 
on a journey to the colloquy at Worms: when he heard the 
sad news at Heidelberg, he looked up to heaven, and ex 
claimed, ** Farewell ! I shall soon follow thee." 

Next to the " Lutherhaus" with the " Luthermuseum," the 
most interesting dwelling in the quaint old town of Witten 
berg on the banks of the Elbe is the house of Melanchthoii 
in the C ollegienstrassc. It is a three-story building, and 
belongs to the Prussian government, King Friedrich Wil- 
helm IV. having bought it from its former owner. Melanch- 
thon s study is on the first story ; there he died. Behind the 
house is a little garden which was connected with Luther s 
garden. Here, under the shade of the tree, the two Reform 
ers may often have exchanged views on the stirring events of 
the times, and encouraged each other in the great conflict. 
The house bears in German the inscription on the outer 

wall : 

" Hero lived, taught, and died 
1 iiiLii i MELANCUTIION." 

41. Luther and Melanchthon. 

r. SniAFF: L ltlirr un<l Mfhincfitlion, in his " Der Deutsche Kire.henfreund," 
MrrcerslMin:, T.i., vol. III. (ls.10), pp. , r >S-<>4. K. L. HKNKK: I)<m \ (r- 
fttiltnixft Lntltrrx uml Mi lnnchtlums zn ciiKnulcr. F< xtrc<l< mn /,9 A]>ril, 
1S(5(). Marhnr^ (2S pai^es). Compare also DOLLINUEU: Die llcforma- 
tion, vol. i. ;J4 J si<i. 

" \Vo ^ich das Stron^o mil dein Zarten, 
\V<> Starkes sieh and Mildes paarten, 

Da giebt es einen guteii Klang." (Scltillrr.) 

In great creative epochs of the Church, God associates 
congenial leaders for mutual help and comfort. In the Ref 
ormation of the sixteenth century, we find Luther and Me- 
lanchthon in Germany, Zwingli and CEcolampadius, Farel and 
Viret, Calvin and P>e/.a in Switzerland, Cranmer, Latimer, 
and Ridley in Kngland, Knox and Melville in Scotland, work- 


ing together with different gifts, but in the same spirit and 
for the same end. The Methodist revival of the eighteenth 
century was carried on by the co-operation of the two Wes- 
leys and Whitefield ; and the Anglo-Catholic movement of 
the nineteenth, by the association of Pusey, Newman, and 

Immediately after his arrival at the Saxon University, on 
the Elbe, Melanchthon entered into an intimate relation with 
Luther, and became his most useful and influential co-laborer. 
He looked up to his elder colleague with the veneration of a 
son, and was carried away and controlled (sometimes against 
his better judgment) by the fiery genius of the Protestant 
Elijah ; while Luther regarded him as his superior in learn 
ing, and was not ashamed to sit humbly at his feet. He 
attended his exegetical lectures, and published them, without 
the author s wish and knowledge, for the benefit of the 
Church. Melanchthon declared in April, 1520, that u he 
would rather die than be separated from Luther;" and in 
November of the same year, " Martin s welfare is dearer to 
me than my own life." Luther was captivated by Melanch- 
thon s first lecture ; he admired his scholarship, loved his 
character, and wrote most enthusiastically about him in con 
fidential letters to Spalatin, Reuchlin, Langc, Scheurl, and 
others, lauding him as a prodigy of learning and piety. 1 

The friendship of these two great and good men is one of 
the most delightful chapters in the religious drama of the 
sixteenth century. It rested on mutual personal esteem and 

1 Lnthorns ad Rouchlinum, Dec. 14, 1518: " Philippus Mdnnrli- 
thon, homo (idmir<i.oil.!x, into pciie niJiil habens,f)uod non snprft fioinincin x!t, 
fdmilidrissiiniiit lumen et amicissimus mihi." To Dillikan ho wrote in 1523 
(Do Wot to, II. 407): " Den Philippics achtc ich nirht anderx <tl* mich sclbst, 
duxijenoiinnen hi Ilinxirht. attf seine Gelehrsamkeit und die I nocxcholfenhcit 
seinex J^-nctix, vodnrcli cr mirh, dftss ich nic/it hlox s<t</f, iibertrifft." In his 
humorous way ho once invited him (Oct. 18, 1518) to supper under the address: 
" Philii>]>o Melanchthoni, Schwarzerd, Gru co, Lathx*, Ilebrceo, Gennano, 
nunfjiHiin Harbtiro." 1 Tlie testimonies of Lutlx-r on Mol. are collected in the 
first and last vols. of the " Corp. Reform." (especially xxviii 1 . \> and 10). 


hearty German affection, but especially on the consciousness 
of a providential mission intrusted to their united labors. 
Although somewhat disturbed, at a later period, by slight 
doctrinal differences and occasional ill-humor, 1 it lasted to 
the end ; and as they worked together for the same cause, so 
they now rest under the same roof in the castle church at 
Wittenberg, at whose doors Luther had nailed the war-cry of 
the Reformation. 

Melanchthon descended from South Germany, Luther from 
North Germany ; the one from the well-to-do middle classes 
of citizens and artisans, the other from the rough but sturdy 
peasantry. Melanchthon had a quiet, literary preparation 
for his work: Luther experienced much hardship and severe 
moral conflicts. The former passed to his Protestant convic 
tion through the door of classical studies, the latter through 
the door of monastic asceticism ; the one was fore-ordained to 
a professor s chair, the other to the leadership of an army of 

Luther best understood and expressed the difference of 
temper and character ; and it is one of his noble traits, that he 
did not allow it to interfere with the esteem and admiration 
for his younger friend and colleague. " I prefer the books of 
Master Philippus to my own, he wrote in LV29. 2 "I am 
rough, boisterous, stormy, and altogether warlike. I am born 
to fight against innumerable monsters and devils. I must 
remove stumps and stones, cut away thistles and thorns, and 
clear the wild forests; but Master Philippus comes along 
sofily and gently, sowing and watering with joy, accord 
ing to the gifts which (Jod has abundantly bestowed upon 

Luther was incomparably the stronger man of the two, 

1 Melanehthon bints also. In one of his confidential letters, at female 

fe. the yvraiKorvpuwif, as an incidental element in the disturbance. 
"Corp. Hff.," III. :5i8. 

2 In his preface to Melanchthon s Coinmentnry on Coloxxians. 


and differed from Melanchthon as the wild mountain torrent 
differs from the quiet stream of the meadow, or as the rush 
ing tempest from the gentle breeze, or, to use a seriptural 
illustration, as the fiery Paul from the contemplative John. 
Luther was a man of war, Melanchthon a man of peace. 
Luther s writings smell of powder ; his words are battles ; he 
overwhelms his opponents with a roaring cannonade of argu 
ment, eloquence, passion, and abuse. Melanchthon excels 
in moderation and amiability, and often exercised a happy 
restraint upon the unmeasured violence of his colleague. 
Once when Luther in his wrath burst out like a thunde 
storm, Melanchthon quieted him by the line, 

" Vince animos iramque tuam qui cwtera vincis." 

Luther was a creative genius, and pioneer of new paths ; 
Melanchthon, a profound scholar of untiring industry. The 
one was emphatically the man for the people, abounding in 
strong and clear sense, popular eloquence, natural wit, genial 
humor, intrepid courage, and straightforward honesty. The 
other was a quiet, considerate, systematic thinker ; a man 
of order, method, and taste, and gained the literary circles 
for the cause of the Reformation. He is the principal 
founder of a Protestant theology, and the author of the Augs 
burg Confession, the chief symbol of the Lutheran Church. 
He very properly represented the evangelical cause in all 
the theological conferences with the Roman-Catholic party 
at Augsburg, Speier, Worms, Frankfort, Ratisbon, where 
Luther s presence would only have increased the heat of con 
troversy, and widened the breach. Luther was unyielding 
and uncompromising against Romanism and Zwinglianism : 
Melanchthon was always ready for compromise and peace, 
as far as his honest convictions would allow, and sincerely 
labored to restore the broken unity of the Church. He was 
even willing, as his qualified subscription to the Articles of 
Smalcald shows, to admit a certain supremacy of the Pope 


(jure Jntmano), provided he would tolerate the free preach 
ing of the gospel. But Popery and evangelical freedom will 
never agree 

Luther was the boldest, the most heroic and commanding; 
Melanchthon, the most gentle, pious, and conscientious, of 
the Reformers. Melanchthon had a sensitive and irritable 
temperament, though under good control, and laeked cour 
age ; he felt, more keenly and painfully than any other, the 
tremendous responsibility of the great religious movement 
in which he was engaged. lie would have made any per 
sonal sacrifice if he could have removed the confusion and 
divisions attendant upon it. 1 On several occasions lie showed, 
no doubt, too much timidity and weakness ; but his conces 
sions to the enemy, and his disposition to compromise for the 
sake of peace and unity, proceeded always from pure and 
conscientious motives. 

The two Wittenberg Reformers were brought together by 
the hand of Providence, to supply and complete each other, 
and by their united talents and energies to carry forward the 
German Reformation, which would have assumed a very dif 
ferent character if it had been exclusively left in the hands 
of either of them. 

Without Luther the Reformation would never have taken 
hold of the common people : without Melanchthon it would 
never have succeeded among the scholars of Germany. With 
out Luther, Melanchthon would have become a second Kras- 
mns, though with a profoiinder interest in religion; and the 
Reformation would have resulted in a liberal theological 
school, instead of giving birth to a Church. However much 
the humble and unostentatious labors and merits of Me 
lanchthon are overshadowed by the more striking and 
brilliant deeds of the heroic Luther, they were, in their 
own way, quite as useful and indispensable. The u still 

" I)cr Srlnnrrz <1<T Klrch^nKpaltuny i*t li<f dnrch seine schuldlose .Sct/c 
yi-<j in<ji-it." Huso, Kirchenyi-Mch., llth ed. (IbbO), p. 372. 

- 196 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A.D. 1517 TO 1530. 

small voice " often made friends to Protestantism where 
the earthquake and thunder-storm produced only terror and 

Luther is greatest as a Reformer, Melanchthon as a Chris 
tian scholar. lie represents in a rare degree the harmony of 
humanistic culture with biblical theology and piety. In this 
respect he surpassed all his contemporaries, even Erasmus 
and Reuchlin. lie is, moreover, the connecting link between 
contending churches, and a forerunner of Christian union 
and catholicity which will ultimately heal the divisions and 
strifes of Christendom. To him applies the beatitude : 
" Blessed are the peacemakers ; for they shall be called the 
children of God." 

The friendship of Luther and Melanchthon drew into its 
charming circle also some other worthy and remarkable resi 
dents of Wittenberg, Lucas Cranach the painter, who lent 
his art to the service of the Reformation ; Justus Jonas, who 
came to Wittenberg in 1521 as professor and provost of the 
castle church, translated several writings of Luther and Me 
lanchthon into German, and accompanied the former to 
Worms (1521), and on his last journey to Eisleben (1540) ; 
and Johann Bugenhagen, called Doctor Pomeranus, who 
moved from Pomerania to Wittenberg in 1521 as professor 
and preacher, and lent the Reformers most effective aid in 
translating the Bible, and organized the Reformation in sev 
eral cities of North Germany and in Denmark. 

42. Ulrich von Hutten and Luther. 

DOCKING S edition of ULRICIII HUTTEXI eqnitis Gcrmani Opera. Lips. 
18.7.) -1801. 5 vols. \vith three supplements, 1804-1870. DAVID 
FUIEDRICH STRAUSS (the author of the Lcben Jesu): Gcsprudtc von 
Ulrich von Iluttfn, ubersetzt wul crlautcrt, Leipz. 1SOO, and his biog 
raphy of Ulrich von Ilnttcn, 4th eil., Bonn, 1878 (pp. 507). A masterly 
work by a congenial spirit. Compare K. HAGEN, Dcutschlands liter, 
wid rel. Verh. in Reformationszeitaltcr, II. 47-00; RAXKE, 1). Gcsch. 
I. 280-294; JAXSSEN, II. 53 sqq. 


While Luther acquired in Melanchthon, the head of the 
Christian and theological wing of the humanists, a per 
manent and invaluable ally, he received also temporary aid 
and comfort from the pagan and political wing of the human 
ists, and its ablest leader, L lrich von Ilutten. 

This literary knight and German patriot was descended 
from an ancient but impoverished noble family of Franconia. 
lie was born April 21, 1488, and began life, like Erasmus, 
as an involuntary monk ; but he escaped from Fulda in his 
sixteenth year, studied humanities in the universities of 
Erfurt, Cologne, and Frank furt-on-the-Oder, law at Pavia and 
Bologna, traveled extensively, corresponded with the most 
prominent men of letters, was crowned as poet by the Em 
peror Maximilian at Augsburg (1517), and occupied an influ 
ential position at the court of Archbishop Albrecht of Mainz 
(1517-1520), who had charge of the sale of indulgences in 

lie took a lively part in Heuchlin s conflict with the obscu 
rantism of the Dominicans of Cologne. 1 He is, next to his 
friend Crotus of Erfurt, the chief author of the Epixtuhe 
of xrurorinn Virorum^ that barbarous ridicule of barbarism, in 
which the ignorance, stupidity, bigotry, and vulgarity of the 
monks are exposed by factitious letters in their own wretched 
Latin witli such success that thev accepted them at first as 
genuine, and bought a number of copies for distribution. 2 
lie vigorously attacked the abuses and corruptions of the 

1 Triiniiphim rV;/-m o/i/.x (KI ITTVIOC = Keuchlin), a poem written in 1")14, Imt 
not published till l.">js under the pseudo-name of EleuLherius l>y/enus. 
HW*-*, III. 4 1:1-447 ; Strauss, I , r. //., !."> s<|. 

First published \~ t \:> |at Hagenau]. ;ind 1")17 at Basel; best ed. by Hock 
ing, iu Hutten s OjU rn, Suppl. i. Lips. (1S<>4), and commentary in Suppl. ii. 
(l*o .t); an excellent critical analysis liy Sirauvs, I.e. KM stjij. lie compares 
them with Don Quixote. The first book of the / //*/. is chieily from Crotus, 
the second chieily from Ilutten. The comic impression arises in great part 
from the barbarous Laliuity, and is lost in a translation. There is, however, 
a good German translation by Dr. Wilhelm Hinder : Jtricfe ton Dnnkclinaii- 
nrrti. Stuttgart, 1S7H. The translator says he knew twenty-seven Latin 
editions, but no translation. 


Church, in Latin and German pamphlets, in poetry and prose, 
with all the weapons of learning, common-sense, wit, and 
satire. He was, next to Luther, the boldest and most effec 
tive polemical writer of that period, and was called the Ger 
man Demosthenes on account of his philippics against Rome. 
His Latin is better than Luther s, but his German far inferior. 
In wit and power of ridicule he resembles Lucian ; at times 
he reminds one of Voltaire and Heine. He had a burning 
love of German liberty and independence. This was his 
chief motive for attacking Rome. He laid the axe at the 
root of the tree of tyranny. His motto was, " lacia est 
alea. Ich halts yewayt." l 

He republished in 1518 the tract of Laurentius Valla on 
the Donation of Constantine, with an embarrassing dedica 
tion to Pope Leo X., and exposed on German soil that gigan 
tic fraud on which the temporal power of the papacy over 
all Christian Europe was made to rest. But his chief and 
most violent manifesto against Rome is a dialogue which he 
published under the name " Vadiscus, or the Roman Trinity" 
in April, 1520, a few months before Luther s "Address to the 
German Nobility " (July) and his " Babylonian Captivity " 
(October). He here groups his experiences in Rome under 
several triads of what abounds in Rome, of what is lacking 
in Rome, of what is forbidden in Rome, of what one brings 
home from Rome, etc. He puts them into the mouth of a 
Roman consul, Vadiscus, and makes variations on them. 
Here are some specimens: 2 

" Three things keep Rome in power: the authority of the Pope, the bones 
of saints, and the traffic in indulgences. 

" Three things are in Rome without number: strumpets, priests, and scribes. 

1 " The die is cast. I have ventured it." An allusion to the exclamation 
of Csvsar when he crossed the Rubicon, and marched to Rome. 

2 Strauss, U. v. II. , p. 285 S qq., 281); and his translation, in Uutterfs Gespr. 
p. 04 sqq., 114 sqq. I have omitted the interlocutories in the dialogue. 
Vadiscus is Iluttcn s friend Crotus of Erfurt (also Luther s friend); and 
Ernhold is his friend Arnold Glauberger, with whom he had been in Rome. 


" Three things abound in Rome: antiquities, poison, and ruins. 

" Three tilings are banished from Rome: simplicity, temperance, and 
piety (or, in another place: poverty, the ancient discipline, and the preach 
ing <>f the truth). 

"Three things the Romans trade in: Christ, ecclesiastical benefices, and 

" Three things everybody desires iu Rome: short masses, good gold, and 
a luxurious life. 

"Three things are disliked in Rome: a general council, a reformation of 
the clergy, and the fact that the (iennans begin to open their eyes. 

"Three things displease the Romans most: the unity of the Christian 
princes, the education of the people, and the discovery of their frauds. 

" Three things are most valued in Rome: handsome women, fine horses, 
and papal bulls. 

"Three things are in general use in Rome: luxury of the flesh, splendor 
in dress, and pride of the heart. 

" Three tilings Rome can never get enough of: money for the episcopal 
pallium, monthly, and annual incomes from vacant benefices. 1 

44 Three things are most praised and yet most rare in Rome: devotion, 
faith, and innocence. 

" Three things Rome brings to naught: a good conscience, devotion, and 
the oath. 

"Three things are necessary in Rome to gain a lawsuit: money, letters 
of recommendation, and lies. 

"Three things pilgrims usually bring back from Rome: a soiled con 
science, a sick stomach, and an empty purse. 

" Three things have kept Germany from getting wisdom: the stupidity of 
the princes, the decay of learning, and the superstition of the people. 

44 Three things are feared most in Home: that the princes get united, that 
the people begin to open their eyes, and that Rome s frauds are coming to 

"Three things only could set Koine right: the determination of the 
princes, the impatience of the people, and an army of Turks at her doors." 

This epigrammatic and pithy form made the dialogue pop 
ular and effective. Even Luther imitated it when, in his 
"Babylonian Captivity," lie speaks of three walls, and three 
rods of the Papists. Hntteii calls the Roman court a sink of 

1 Allusion to the papal chiims to fill the ecclesiastical vacancies which 
occurred during the long months (January, March, etc.), and to receive the 
ami itt H, I.e., the first year s income from every spiritual living worth more 
than twenty-four ducats per annum. Luther, in his Address to the German 
Nobility, characterizes this papal avarice as downright robbery. 


iniquity, and says that for centuries no genuine successor of 
Peter had sat on his chair in Home, but successors and imita 
tors of Simon Magus, Xero, Domitian, and Heliogabalus. 

As a remedy for these evils, he advises, not indeed the . 
abolition of the papacy, but the withdrawal of all financial 
support from Germany, a reduction of the clerical force, and 
the permission of clerical marriage ; by these means, luxury 
and immorality would at least be checked. 

It is characteristic of the church of that age, that Ilutten 
was on terms of intimacy with the first prelate of Germany, 
even while he wrote his violent attacks on Rome, and re 
ceived a salary, and afterwards a pension, from him. But he 
lauded Albrecht to the skies for his support of liberal learn 
ing, lie knew little of, and cared less for, doctrinal differ 
ences. His policy was to fight the big Pope of Rome with 
the little Pope of Germany, and to make the German em 
peror, princes, and nobles, his allies in shaking off the degrad 
ing yoke of foreign tyranny. Possibly Albrecht may have 
indulged in the dream of becoming the primate of an inde 
pendent Catholic Church of Germany. 

Unfortunately, Ilutten lacked moral purity, depth, and 
weight. lie was frank, brave, and bold, but full of conceit, 
a restless adventurer, and wild stormer ; able to destroy, but 
unable to build up. In his twentieth year he had contracted 
a disgusting disease which ruined him physically, and was 
used by his Roman opponents to ruin him morally. lie suf- 
i ered incredibly from it and from all sorts of quack remedies, 
for ten years, was attacked by it again after his cure, and yet 
maintained the vigor and freshness of his spirit. 1 

Hutten hailed the Wittenberg movement, though at first 
only as " a quarrel between two hot-headed monks who are 

1 He himself speaks very frankly of his Morbux Gallicux, or Nulum Fran- 
cia> and its horrible effects, without asserting his innocence. Strauss dis 
cusses it fully with a belief in his guilt, yet pity for his sufferings and 
admiration for his endurance. " Er huttc," he says (U. v. IT., p. 241), den 
Juyendf elder, di-wen itv r if in schuldiy achten, in eincm Grade zu frws.seH, 


shouting and screaming against each other," and hoped " tliut 
tliey would eat each other up." After the Leipzig disputa 
tion, he offered to Luther (first through Melanchthon) the 
aid of his pen and sword, and, in the name of his noble friend 
the knight Franz von Sickingen, a safe retreat at Ebernburg 
near Kivimiaeh, where Martin Bucer, Johann CEcolampadius, 
and other fugitives from convents, and sympathizers with 
reform, found a hospitable home. He sent him his books 
with notes, that he might republish them. 

Hut Luther was cautious. He availed himself of the liter 
ary and political sympathy, but only as far as his theological 
and religious position allowed. He respected Reuehlin, Kras- 
mus, Crotus, Mntian, Pirkheimer, Ilutten, and the other hu 
manists, for their learning and opposition to monkery and 
priestcraft; he fully shared the patriotic indignation against 
Romish tyranny : but he missed in them moral earnestness, 
religious depth, and that enthusiasm for the pure gospel 
which was his controlling passion. He aimed at reformation, 
they at illumination. He did not relish the frivolous satire 
of the Epixtola; obscurorum virorum ; he called them silly, 
and the author a Han* \\ ttn<t. (.Jack Sausage) ; he would 
grow indignant, and weep rather than laugh, over the obscur 
antism and secret vices of the monks, though he had as keen 
a sense of the ridiculous as ( rotus and Ilutten. lie depre 
cated, moreover, the resort to physical force in a spiritual 
warfare, and relied on the power of the Word of (Jod, which 
had founded the Church, and which must reform the Church. 
His letters to Ilutten are lost, hut lie wrote to Spalatin (Jan. 
Itj, loiil): "You see what Ilutten wants. I would not have 
the gospel defended by violence and murder. In this sense 
I wrote to him. By the \Vord the world was conquered; by 

todi-lur HiViHt d<x nut-rliittlirfiHti n Sitti-ni- n-liti-rx Strt-n /c in Mitlihl rcr- 
W(in<l<ln inn**. . . . M(inicrin>inicht ten* Hrhrfrklicher int, die Ilcxchreibung 
die iinn Ilnttfti riin Mi iiH in Ztmtnndr, <><li r // rr nnx ro/i <l ii (Jti&lprelen 
maclit, iri Irhc ton unvirntdn<li<jui A< i~ztiti til* Curcn Wr ilin n rlitinyt 


the Word the Church was preserved ; by the Word she will 
be restored. Antichrist, as lie began without violence, will 
be crushed without violence, by the Word." 

Iliitten was impatient. He urged matters to a crisis. 
Sickingen attacked the Archbishop and Elector of Trier 
(Treves) to force the Reformation into his territory ; but he 
was defeated, and died of his wounds in the hands of his 
enemies, May 7, 1522. Within one month all his castles 
were captured and mostly burnt by the allied princes ; two 
of his sons were banished, a third was made prisoner. Luther 
saw in this disaster a judgment of God, and was confirmed 
in his aversion to the use of force. 1 

Hutten fled, a poor and sick exile, from Germany to Basel, 
and hoped to find a hospitable reception by Erasmus, his for 
mer friend and admirer ; but he was coldly refused by the 
cautious scholar, and took bitter revenge in an unsparing 
attack on his character. He then went to Zurich, and was 
kindly and generously treated by Zwingli, who provided him 
with books and money, and sent him first to the hot bath of 
Pfeffers, and then to a quiet retreat on the island of Ufnau 
in the Lake of Zurich, under medical care. But he soon 
died there, of the incurable disease of his youth, in August, 
1523, in the prime of life (thirty -five years and four months 
of age), leaving nothing but his pen and sword, and the les 
son : " Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, saith 
the Lord of hosts" (Zech. 4: G). 

With Ilutten and Sickingen the hope of a political recon 
struction of Germany through means of the Reformation and 
physical force was destroyed. What the knights failed to 
accomplish, the peasants could still less secure by the general 
revolt two years later. But notwithstanding these checks, 
the Reformation was bound to succeed with spiritual weapons. 

1 E. Miinch, Fr. r. Sickinf/en. Stuttgart, 1S27 sqq. 3 vols. Strauss, Lc. 
p. 488. Ullmann, Franz r. Sickinyen, Leipzig, 1872. 


43. Luther s Crusade ayainxt Popery. 1620. 

After the disputation at Leipzig, Luther lost all hope of a 
reformation from Koine, which was preparing a bull of ex- 

Here begins his storm and pressure period, 1 which culmin 
ated in the burning of the Pope s bull, and the protest at the 
Diet of Worms. 

L ndei severe mental anguish he was driven to the convic 
tion that the papacy, as it existed in his day, was an anti- 
christian power, and the chief source and support of abuses 
in the Church. Prierias, Kck, Kmser, and A 1 veld defended 
the most extravagant claims of the papacy with much learn 
ing, but without any discrimination between fact and fiction. 
Luther learned from the book of Laurentius Valla, as re- 
published by ririeh von Ilutteii, that the Donation of Con- 
stantine, by which this emperor conferred on Pope Sylvester 
and his successors the temporal sovereignty not only over the 
Lateran Palace, but also over Koine, Italy, and all the West, 
was a baseless forgery of the dark ages. He saw through 
the 4 * devilish lies," as he called them, of the canon law 
and the pseudo-Isidorian Decretals. " It must have been a 
plague sent by God, he says (in his " Address to the German 
Nobility"), "that induced so many people to accept such lies, 
though they are so gross and clumsy that one would think a 
drunken boor could lie more skillfully." Genuine Catholic 
scholars of a later period have exposed with irrefragable 
arguments this falsification of history. His view of the 
Church expanded beyond the limits of the papacy, and took 
in the Oriental Christians, and even such men as Hus, who 
was burned hy an o cumenieal council for doctrines derived 
from St. Paul and St. August in. Instead of confining the 
Church, like the; Romanists, t<> an external visible communion 
under the Pope, he regarded it now as a spiritual communion 

1 Sturm- un<l Drany periods is an expressive German phrase. 


of all believers under Christ the only Head. All the powers 
of indignation and hatred of Roman oppression and corrup 
tion gathered in his breast. " I ean hardly doubt," he wrote 
to Spalatin, Feb. 23, 1520, "that the Pope is the Antichrist." 
In the same year, Oct. 11, he went so far as to write to Leo X. 
that the papal dignity was fit only for traitors like Judas 
Iscariot whom God had cast out. 1 

Luther was much confirmed in his new convictions by 
Melanchthon, who had independently by calm study arrived 
at the same conclusion. In the controversy with Eck, Au 
gust, 1519, Melanchthon laid down the far-reaching principle 
that the Scriptures are the supreme rule of faith, and that we 
must not explain the Scriptures by the Fathers, but explain 
and judge the Fathers by the Scriptures. He discovered that 
even Ambrose, Jerome, and Augustin had often erred in 
their exegesis. A little later (September, 1519), he raised 
the same charge against the councils, and maintained that a 
Catholic Christian could not be required to believe any thing 
that was not warranted by the Scriptures. lie expressed 
doubts about trail substantiation and the whole fabric of the 
mass. His estimate of the supreme value of the Scriptures, 
especially of Paul, rose higher and higher, and made him 
strono-er and bolder in the conflict with mediaeval tradi- 



Thus fortified by the learning of Melanchthon, encouraged 
by the patriotic zeal of Ilutten and Sickingen, goaded by the 
fury of his enemies, and impelled, as it were, by a preternat 
ural impulse, Luther attacked the papal power as the very 
stronghold of Satan. Without personal ill-will against any 
body, he had a burning indignation against the system, and 

1 In tho midst of a Latin letter to Spalatin, from the beginning of June, 
I M) (I)e Write. I. 4~>:}), he gives vent to his wrath against popery in these 
German words: " IcJi indue, .s/e Kind zn Horn allr toll, thoricltt, wu/licnd, 
WI.X//U?/. /, Xnrren, Stork, Stein, IIolJc, ioid Tcnfvl (jcivordcn." In the same 
letter he mentions his intention to publish a book " ad Carolnm ct totius 
Gcnuauicb nobiidattiu udccraua Romans curiit tyraiitiideni et nequitiam." 


transcended all bounds of moderation. 1 He felt Hie inspira 
tion of a prophet, and had the courage of a martyr ready to 
die at any moment for his conviction. 

He issued in rapid succession from July till October, 1520, 
his three most effective reformatory works: the "Address to 
the dermaii Nobility," the "Babylonian Captivity of the 
Church," and the Freedom of a Christian Man." 2 The first 
two are trumpets of war, and the hardest blows ever dealt 
by human pen to the system of popery; while the third 
is peaceful, and shines like a rainbow above the thunder 
clouds. A strange contrast! Luther was the most conserva 
tive of radicals, and the most radical of conservatives. He 
had all the violence of a revolutionary orator, and at the 
same time the pious spirit of a contemplative mystic. 

The sixteenth century was the age of practical soteriology. 
It had to settle the relation of man to God, to bring the be 
liever into direct communion with Christ, and to secure to 
him the personal benefits of the gospel salvation. What was 
heretofore regarded as the exclusive privilege of the priest 
was to become the common privilege of every Christian. To 
this end, it was necessary to break down the walls which 
separated the clergy from the laity, and obstructed the 
approach to God. This was most effectually clone by Luther s 
anti-papal writings. On the relation of man to God rests the 
relation of man to his fellow-men; this is the sociological 
problem which forms one of the great tasks of the nineteenth 

1 SOP the roinarkablo passage in his letter to Conrad Fellieanus, January 
or February, l.~21 (Do Wette, I. .">.">."): " Ilcrtc mows intnlcnti(V me : Mittio ct 
ipxr, ><l coupon md nn xmn ; ruj ior jicurin cjno ttpiritii, cum ncmini me 
tnnlr tflle ronnciitx xim : vrnm urycnt ttinm illi furiotti&sltne, ut Sntnnnm 
non xtitiK o wnv 7/i." 

a L. Lcnmic: Die drei groxurn Kfformcitlonsitchr(ften Lnthcra mm Jfttire 
UtO. Ciotha, 1875, 2d M!., 1SS4. WACE and UUCIIUEIM: First Principles 
Of the Reformation, London, 


44. Address to the German Nobility. 

An den chrixtlichen Add deutscher Nation: ron (?<?.s christlichen Ktand?* 
Kesacrunrj. In Walch s eel., X. 200 srjq.; Erl. od., XXI. 274-300; Wei 
mar ed., V. . Kostlin (in his shorter biography of Luther, p. 197 New- 
York ed.) gives a facsimile of the title-page of the second edition. Dr. 
Karl Benrath of Bonn published a separate ed., with introduction and 
notes, as No. 4 of the !Schriften des Vereins fur Reforuiationsge- 
schichte," Halle, 1880 (114 pages). 

"The time for silence is gone, and the time for speaking 
lias come." With these words (based on Eccles. 8 : 7) of 
the dedicatory preface to Amsdorf, Luther introduces his ad 
dress " to his most Serene and Mighty Imperial Majesty, and 
to the Christian Nobility of the German Nation, respecting 
a Reformation of the Christian Estate/ The preface is 
dated on the Eve of St. John the Baptist (June 23), 1520; 
the book was hastily completed July 20, 1 and before Aug. 18 
no less than four thousand copies an enormous number for 
those days were published, and a new edition called for, 
besides reprints which soon appeared in Leipzig and Strass- 

The book is a most stirring appeal to the German nobles, 
who, through Hutten and Sickingen, had recently offered 
their armed assistance to Luther. lie calls upon them to 
take the much-needed Reformation of the Church into their 
own hands ; not, indeed, by force of arms, but by legal 
means, in the fear of God, and in reliance upon his strength. 
The bishops and clergy refused to do their duty ; hence the 
laity must come to the front of the battle for the purity and 
liberty of the Church. 

Luther exposes without mercy the tyranny of the Pope, 
whose government, he says, "agrees with the government of 
the apostles as well as Lucifer with Christ, hell with heaven, 

1 On that date he informed Wencislaus Link: " Editur noxter Hhcllus in 
Papum dc reformanda ecclesia vernaculus, ad universam nohilitatem Ger- 
maniw, qul sum me offcnsurus est Itomam. . . . Vale, et ora pro me. 1 
De Wette, I. 470. 


night with day; and yet he calls himself Christ s Vicar, and 
the Successor of Peter." 

Tin 1 hook is divided into three parts: 

1. In the first part, Luther pulls down what he calls the 
three walls of Jericho, which the papacy had erected in sell- 
defense against any reformation ; namely, the exclusion of 
the laity from all control, the exclusive claim to interpret 
the Scriptures, and the exclusive claim to call a Council. 

Under the first head, he brings out clearly and strongly, in 
opposition to priestcraft, the fundamental Protestant prin 
ciple of the general priesthood of all baptized Christians. 
lie attacks the distinction of two estates, one spiritual, con 
sisting of Pope, bishops, priests, and monks; and one tem 
poral, consisting of princes, lords, artificers, and peasants. 
There is only one body, under Christ the Head. All Chris 
tians belong to the spiritual estate. Baptism, gospel and 
faith, these alone make spiritual and Christian people. 1 
We are consecrated priests by baptism ; we are a royal 
priesthood, kings and priests before God (1 Pet. "2: i> ; Rev. 
5: 10). The only difference, then, between clergy and laity, 
is one of ofiice and function, not of estate. 

Luther represents here the ministerial office as the crea 
ture of the congregation ; while at a later period, warned by 
democratic excesses, and the nnfitness of most of the con 
gregations of that age for a popular form of government, 
he laid greater stress upon tin; importance of the ministry 
as an institution of Christ. This idea of the general priest 
hood necessarily led to the emancipation of the laity from 
priestly control, and their participation in the affairs of the 
Church, although this lias been but very imperfectly carried 
out in Protestant state churches. It destroyed the distinc 
tion between higher (clerical and monastic), and lower mo 
rality ; it gave sanctity to the natural relations, duties, and 

" H ff.i (tun tier Tfittfi rfclcroctifii ixt, dan may sich r" tj *wic n, dass cs schon 
Printer, Biacltof, und 1 ujsxt yi-wcihet et." 


virtues; it elevated the family as equal in dignity to vir 
ginity; it promoted general intelligence, and sharpened the 
sense of individual responsibility to the Church. But to the 
same source may be traced also the undue interference of 
kings, princes, and magistrates in ecclesiastical matters, and 
that degrading dependence of many Protestant establish 
ments upon the secular power. Kingcraft and priestcraft 
are two opposite extremes, equally opposed to the spirit of 
Christianity. Luther, and especially Melanchthon, bitterly 
complained, in their later years, of the abuse of the episco 
pal power assumed by the magistrate, and the avarice of 
princes in the misappropriation of ecclesiastical property. 

The principle of the general priesthood of the laity found 
its political and civil counterpart in the American principle 
of the general kingship of men, as expressed in the Decla 
ration of Independence, that "all men are born free and 

2c In the second part, Luther chastises the worldly pomp 
of the Pope and the cardinals, their insatiable greed, and 
exactions under false pretenses. 

3. In the third part, he deals with practical suggestions. 
He urges sweeping reforms in twenty-seven articles, to be 
effected either by the civil magistrate, or by a general coun 
cil of ministers and laymen. 

He recommends the abolition of the annates, of the worldly 
pomp and idolatrous homage paid to the Pope (as kissing his 
feet), and of his whole temporal power, so that he should be 
hereafter merely a spiritual ruler, with no power over the 
emperor except to anoint and crown him, as a bishop crowns 
a king, as Samuel crowned Saul and David. 

He strongly demands the abrogation of enforced clerical 
celibacy, which destroys instead of promoting chastity, and 
is the cause of untold misery. Clergymen should be allowed 
to marry, or not to marry, according to their gift and sense 
of dutv. 


Masses for the dead should l>e abolished, since they have 
become a solemn mockery, and devices for getting money, 
thus exciting the anger of God. 

Processions, saints days, and most of the public festivals, 
except Sunday, should be abrogated, since holy days have 
become most unholy by drinking, gambling, and idling. 

Monasteries should be reduced in number, and converted 
into schools, with freedom to enter and to leave without 
binding vows. 

Certain punishments of the canon law should cease, espe 
cially the interdict which silences Clod s word and service, 
a greater sin than to kill twenty Popes at once. 

Fasts should be voluntary and optional ; for whilst at 
Rome they laugh at fasts, they let us abroad eat oil which 
they would not think fit for greasing their boots, and then 
sell us the liberty of eating butter and other things; whereas 
the apostle says that the gospel has given us liberty in all 
such matters (1 Cor. 10: 25 sq.). 

lie also would forbid all begging in Christendom; each 
town should support its own poor, and not allow strange 
becrcars to come in, whether pilgrims or mendicant monks; 

OtD L O 

it is not right that one should work that another may be 
idle, and live ill that another may live well, hut "if any 
would not work, neither should he eat" (*2 Thess. 3: 10). 

Ih- counsels a reduction of the clerical force, and the pro 
hibition of pluralities. "As for the fraternities, together 
with indulgences, letters of indulgence, dispensations, masses, 
and all such things, let them all he drowned and abolished." 

lie recommends (Art. 24) to do justice to, and make peace 
with, the Px.hemians; for IIus and Jerome of Prague were 
unjustly burnt, in violation of the safe-conduct promised by 
the Pope and the Emperor. Heretics should be overcome 
with books, not with fire; else "the hangmen would be the 
most learned doctors in the world, and there would be no 
need of study." 


In Art. 25, Luther urges a sound reformation of the uni 
versities, which had become " schools of Greek fashion " and 
"heathenish manners" (2 Mace. 4:12,13), and are "full 
of dissolute living." He is unjustly severe upon Aristotle, 
whom he calls a " dead, blind, accursed, proud, knavish hea 
then teacher." His logic, rhetoric, and poetic might be 
retained; but his physics, metaphysics, ethics, and the book 
" Of the Soul " (which teaches that the soul dies with the 
body) ought to be banished, and the study of the languages, 
mathematics, history, and especially of the Holy Scriptures, 
cultivated instead. " Nothing is more devilishly mischiev 
ous," he says, "than an unreformed university." lie would 
also have the canon law banished, of which there is "noth 
ing good but the name," and which is no better than 
"waste paper." 

He does not spare national vices. lie justly rebukes the 
extravagance in dress, the usury, and especially the intemper 
ance in eating and drinking, for which, he says, "we Germans 
have an ill reputation in foreign countries, as our special vice, 
and which has become so common, and gained so much the 
upper hand, that sermons avail nothing." (His frequent pro 
test against the "Saufteufel " of the Germans, as he calls their 
love of drink, is still unheeded. In temperance the South 
ern nations of Europe are far ahead of those of the North.) 

In conclusion, he expresses the expectation that he will be 
condemned upon earth. "My greatest care and fear is, lest 
my cause be not condemned by men ; by which I should 
know for certain that it does not please God. Therefore let 
them freely go to work, Pope, bishop, priest, monk, or doc 
tor : they are the true people to persecute the truth, as they 
have always done. May God grant us all a Christian under 
standing, and especially to the Christian nobility of the Ger 
man nation true spiritual courage, to do what is best for our 
unhappy Church. Amen." 

The book was a firebrand thrown into the headquarters of 


the papal church. It anticipated a reply to the papal Imll, 
and prepared the public mind for it. It went right to the 
heart of the Germans, in their own language wielded with 
a force as never before, and gave increased weight to the 
hundred grievances of long standing against Home. Hut 
it alarmed some of his best friends. They condemned or 
regretted his biting severity. 1 Staupitz tried at the eleventh 
hour to prevent the publication, and soon afterwards (Aug. 
< 2 -}, lf)20) resigned his position as general vicar of the Au- 
giiNtinians, and retired to Salzburg, feeling himself unequal 
to the conflict. John Lange called the book a "blast for 
assault, atrocious and ferocious." Some feared that it might 
lead to a religious war. Melanchthon could not approve the 
violence, but dared not to check the spirit of the new Elijah. 
Luther defended himself by referring to the example of Paul 
and the prophets: it was necessary to be severe in order to 
get a hearing; he felt sure that lie was not moved by desire 
for glory or money or pleasure, and disclaimed the intention 
of stirring up sedition and war; lie only wished to clear the 
wav for a free general council ; lie was perhaps the forerun 
ner of Master Philippus in fighting Ahab and the prophets 
of Haal after the example of Elijah (1 Kings 18). 2 


The following extracts give a fair idea of Luther s polemic against the 
Pope in this remarkable hook: 

" The custom of kissing tin- 1 opc s feet must cease. It is an un-Chris- 
tian. or rather an anti-Christian example, that a poor sinful man should suf 
fer his feet to he kissed hy one who is a hundred times lietter than he. It it 
is done in honor of his power, why dors lie not do it to others in honor 
Of their holiness ? Compare them together: Christ and the Pope. Christ 
washed his disciples feet, and dried them, and the disciples never washed 
his. The Pope, pretending to he higher than Christ, inverts this, and con 
siders it a great favor to let us kiss his feet : whereas if any one wished to 

" OiniK x ferine [/err] in in<- <linnnmit tnnr<lnritatcin," he says in letter 
to Link, Aug. 1!, l. .L O. 

3 See hi* letters to John Lange (Aug. IS, lOiiO) anil to Weuceslaus Link 
(Aug. Hi) in De Wctlc, I. 477-47 J. 


do so, he ought to do his utmost to prevent them, as St. Paul and Barnabas 
would not suffer themselves to be worshiped as gods by the men at Lystra, 
saying, We also are men of like passions with you (Acts 14: 14 seq.). But 
our flatterers have brought things to such a pitch, that they have set up an 
idol for us, until no one regards God with such fear, or honors him with 
such reverence, as they do the Pope. This they can suffer, but not that the 
Pope s glory should be diminished a single hair s-breadth. Now, if they 
were Christians, and preferred God s honor to their own, the Pope would 
never be willing to have God s honor despised, and his own exalted; nor 
would he allow any to honor him, until he foulid that God s honor was 
again exalted above his own. 

"It is of a piece with this revolting pride, that the Pope is not satisfied 
with riding on horseback or in a carriage, but, though he be hale and strong, 
is carried by men like an idol in unheard-of pomp. I ask you, how does 
this Lucifer-like pride agree with the example of Christ, who went on foot, 
as did also all his apostles ? Where has there been a king who lived in such 
worldly pomp as he does, who professes to be the head of all whose duty it 
is to despise and flee from all worldly pomp I mean, of all Christians? 
Not that this need concern us for his own sake, but that we have good reason 
to fear God s wrath, if we flatter such pride, and do not show our discontent. 
It is enough that the Pope should be so mad and foolish, but it is too much 
that we should sanction and approve it." 

After enumerating all the abuses to which the Pope and his canon law 
give sanction, and which he upholds with his usurped authority, Luther 
addresses him in this impassioned style: 

" Dost thou hear this, O Pope ! not the most holy, but the most sinful ? 
Would that God would hurl thy chair headlong from heaven, and cast it 
down into the abyss of hell ! Who gave you the power to exalt yourself 
above God ? to break and to loose what he has commanded ? to teach 
Christians, more especially Germans, who are of noble nature, and are famed 
in all histories for uprightness and truth, to be false, unfaithful, perjured, 
treacherous, and wicked ? God has commanded to keep faith and observe 
oaths even with enemies: you dare to cancel his command, laying it down in 
your heretical, antichrist ian decretals, that you have power to do so; and 
through your mouth and your pen Satan lies as he never lied before, teach 
ing you to twist and pervert the Scriptures according to your own arbitrary 
will. O Lord Christ ! look down upon this, let thy day of judgment come 
and destroy the Devil s lair at Home. Behold him of whom St. Paul spoke 
(2 Thess. 2 : 3, 4), that he should exalt himself above thee, and sit in thy 
Church, showing himself as God the man of sin and the child of damna 
tion. . . . The Pope treads God s commandments under foot, and exalts his 
own: if this is not Antichrist, I do not know what it is." 

Janssen (II. 100) calls Luther s "Address to the German Nobility" "das 
ci jenllichc Krieysmanifcst dcr Lutherisch-Uuttenschen Revolutionspartei," 


and " f . i Siynttl znm ycwnltxamrn AnyrijT." But the l>ook nowhere coun 
sels war; and in the letter to Link he says expressly: " ncr hoc a me ayitttr, 
ut sedition in inoream, xed ut concilio <j< ncrali lihcrtatcm usserant" (I);: 
Wette, I 4T .)- Jansseii quotes (p. 10. )) a very vehement passage from 
Luther s contemporaneous postscript to a book of Prierias which he repub- 
lished (De juridica. ct irrtfrayabili reritate ItomantE Ecdexia Romanians 
P<mt(firi*), expressing a wish that the Emperor, kings, and princes would 
make a bloody end to Pope ami cardinals and the whole rabble of the Romish 
Sodom. Hut this extreme and isolated passage is set aside by his repeated 
declarations against carnal warfare, and was provoked by the astounding 
assertions of Prierias, the master of the papal palace, that the Pope was the 
infallible judge of all controversies, the head of all spiritual, the father of all 
secular princes, ihe head of the C hureh and of the whole universe (caput 
to tins orhis n.iif rs!). Against such blasphemy Luther breaks out in these 
words: " Mihi i-rro ridctiir, si sir ;/< -ryat furor Iloinnnistarnni, million 
rcliijivnu cxxr rcmcdium, qitfttn ut imperntor, reycs ct principea vi ct arinis 
acritfti nyyrediantur IKIH jtctttcx orlnx li mirum, rrimjuc nonjdin rerhix, xcd 
ferro drrcnntnf. . . . Si fures furca, .st latronen ylndio, .si hwreticos iyne 
ph-rtiin>ix, <>() nnn ))i<cjix fion nifty i^trox jierditionix, //o.s cardinales, hoxpaptis 
et tntitni !*t<un rnnimifc Sodoimu colluriein, <inw crclcniain Dd xinc fine cor- 
rnin]>it. oiuitihiiH <irux iiiipctiinux, ct IIHIIIUX nuxtrds in sanyuine eonun luvn- 
inv,\ ? liuif/utun a couiiniini ct oinn iumpericnlottixxinto incendio non nosfroxijxe 
Wxrntnr!." Erl. ed., OJH r<i Lnt/itu, II. 107. lie means a national resistance 
under the guidance of the Emperor and rightful rulers. 

45. Tl> B<ily1onian Captivity of the Church. October, 1620. 

DC Cuptivitatc llalylnnicn EC clewc Prd ludium I). Martini Lutln-ri. ^Vit- 
tenb. l. c i). Erl. ed. Opcrn L<if.. vol. V. 1. J-11S; (Jerman inn 
( Von d<T Bahylonischen Gcfiinyninn, etc.) by an unknown author, loiiO. 
reprinted in WALCII, XIX. o-l.":5, and in O. v. (IKKLACII, IV. (55-1SK); 
the Lat. original again in the Weimar ed., vol. V. An English transla 
tion by lire HUKIM in Principles of the Ill-formation (London, 
188:]), pp. 1-11-iM.j. 

Iii closing the ** Address to the Nobility," Luther an 
nounces: U I have another song still to sing concerning 
Home. If they wish to hear it, I will sing it to them, and 
sing with all my might. Do you understand, my friend 
Rome, what I mean ? " 

This new song, or second war-trumpet, was the book on the 
44 Babylonian Captivity of the Church," published in the be- 


ginning of October, 1520. l He calls it a " prelude," as if the 
real battle were yet to come. He intended it for scholars and 
the clergy, and therefore wrote in Latin. It is a polemical, 
theological work of far-reaching consequences, cutting one of 
the roots of Romanism, and looking towards a new type 
of Christian life and worship. He attacks the sacramental 
system of the Roman Church, by which she accompanies and 
controls the life of the Christian from the cradle to the grave, 
and brings every important act and event under the power 
of the priest. This system he represents as a captivity, and 
Rome as the modern Babylon. Yet he was very far from 
undervaluing the importance and benefit of the sacrament; 
and as far as the doctrine of baptism and the eucharist is 
concerned, he agreed better with the Catholic than with the 
Zwinglian view. 

Luther begins by thanking his Romish opponents for 
promoting his theological education. u Two years ago, he 
says, u I wrote about indulgences when I was still involved 
in superstitious respect for the tyranny of Rome ; but now I 
have learned, by the kind aid of Prierias and the friars, that 
indulgences are nothing but wicked devices of the flatterers 
of Rome. Afterwards Eck and Einser instructed me con 
cerning the primacy of the Pope. While I denied the divine 
right, I still admitted the human right; but after reading 
the super-subtle subtilties of those coxcombs in defense of 
their idol, I became convinced that the papacy is the kingdom 
of Babylon and the power of Nimrod the mighty hunter. 
Now a learned professor of Leipzig writes against me on the 
sacrament in both kinds, and is about to do still greater won 
ders. 2 He says that it was neither commanded nor decreed, 
whether by Christ or the apostles, that both kinds should 
be administered to the laity." 

1 On Ot. 3, 1520, Luther wrote to Spalatin: " Lifter dc captivitate Eccle- 
ni<(> xatifxtti) f .ribit, ct (id tr mittetur." (l)e Wette, I. 401.) 

2 He means Alveld s Triictatnx dc communions *nb utt (tque sjjecic quan 
tum ad Idicon, 1520. He contemptuously omits his name. 


1. Luther first discusses the sacniment of the Holy C<>m- 
union^ and opposes three errors as a threefold bondage ; 
namely, the withdrawal of the eup from the laity, the doc 
trine < if transubstantiation, and the sacrifice of the mass. 

(</ ) As regards the witlulrawal of the cup^ he refutes the 
flimsy arguments of Alveld, and proyes from the accounts of 
Matthew, Mark, Luke, and Paul, that the whole sacrament 
was intended for the laity as well as the clergy, according to 
the command, "Drink ye all of this." Each writer attaches 
the mark of universality to the eup, not to the bread, as 
if the Spirit foresaw the (Bohemian) schism. The blood of 
Christ was shed for all for the remission of sins. If the lay 
men have the thing, why should they be refused the sign 
which is much less than the thing itself / The Church has 
no more right to take away the cup from the laity than the 
bread. The Romanists are the heretics and schismatics in 
this case, and not the Bohemians and the Greeks who take 
their stand on the manifest teaching of the Word of (iod. 
4% I conclude, then, that to deny reception in both kinds to 
the laity is an act of impiety and tyranny, and one not in 
the power of any angel, much less of any Pope or council 
whatsoever." . . . u The sacrament does not belong to the 
priests, but to all; nor are the priests lords, but servants, 
whose duty it is to give both kinds to those who seek them, 
as often as they seek them." . . . "Since the Bishop of Home 
has ceased to be a bishop, and has become a tyrant, I fear 
absolutely none of his decrees; for I know that neither he, 
nor even a general council, has authority to establish new 
articles of faith." 

(/ ) The doctrine of transubstantiation is a milder bondage, 
and might be held alongside with the other and more natural 
view of the real presence, which leaves the elements un 
changed. It is well known that Luther was to the end of 
life a firm believer in the real presence, and oral manducatiou 
of the very body and blood of Christ by unworthy as well as 


worthy communicants (of course, with opposite effects). He 
denied a miraculous change of the substance of the elements, 
but maintained the co-existence of the body and blood in, 
with, and under bread and wine, both being real, the one 
invisible and the other visible. 1 In this book he claims tol 
eration for both theories, with a personal preference for the 
latter. " Christians are at liberty, without peril to their sal 
vation, to imagine, think, or believe in either of the two ways, 
since here there is no necessity of faith." . . . "I will not 
listen to those, or make the slightest account of them, who 
will cry out that this doctrine is Wicliiite, Hussite, heretical, 
and opposed to the decisions of the Church/ The Scripture 
does not say that the elements are transubstantiated: Paul 
calls them real bread and real wine, just as the cup was real. 
Moreover, Christ speaks (figuratively), " This cup is the new 
covenant in my blood," meaning his blood contained in the 
cup. Transubstantiation is a scholastic or Aristotelian fig 
ment of the twelfth century. 2 " Why should Christ not be 
able to include his body within the substance of bread, as 
well as within the accidents? Fire and iron, two different 
substances, are so mingled in red-hot iron, that in every part 
of it are both fire and iron. Why may not the glorious body 
of Christ much more be in every part of the substance of 
the bread ? " Common people do not understand the differ 
ence between substance and accidents, nor argue about it, 
but "believe with simple faith that the body and blood of 
Christ are truly contained in the elements." So also the in 
carnation does not require a transubstantiation of the human 
nature, that so the Godhead may be contained beneath the 
accidents of the human nature; "but each nature is entire, 

1 This view is usually called consubstantiation ; but Lutherans object to 
the term in the sense of unimnntlon, or local inclusion, mixture, and cir 
cumscription. They mean an illocal presence of a ubiquitous body. 

2 This is not strictly historical. Transubstantiation was clearly taught by 
Paschasius Radbertus in the ninth century, though not without contradiction 
from Ratramnus. See behalf, Ch. Hist., vol. IV. 544 sqq. 


and we can suy with truth, This man is God ; this God is 

(/) The ftiii rifin of the nmxx : that is, the offering to God of 
the very body and blood of Christ by the hands of the priest 
when he pronounces the words of institution ; in other words, 
an actual repetition of the atoning sacrifice of the cross, onlv 
in an unbloody manner. This institution is the verv heart 
of Roman-Catholic (and Greek-Catholic) worship. Luther 
attacks it as the third bondage, and the most impious of all. 
He feels the difficulty, and perhaps impossibility, of a task 
which involves an entire revolution of public worship. "At 
this day," he says, * there is no belief in the Church more 
generally received, or more firmly held, than that the mass is 
a good work and a sacrifice. This abuse has brought in an 
infinite Hood of other abuses, until faith in the sacrament has 
been utterly lost, and thev have made this divine sacrament 
a mere subject of traffic, huckstering, and money-getting 
contracts; and the entire maintenance of priests and monks 
depends upon these things." lie goes back to the simplicity 
of the primitive institution of the Lord s Supper, which is a 
thankful commemoration of the atoning death of Christ, with 
a Messing attached to it, namely, the forgiveness of sins, to 
be appropriated bv faith. The substance of this sacrament is 
promise and faith. It is a gift of God to man. not a gift of 
man to God. It is, like baptism, to be received, and not to 
be given. The Romanists have changed it into a good work 
of man and an ojiu* "jH rufitm, by which they imagine to please 
God; and have surrounded it with so many prayers, signs, 
vestments, gestures, and ceremonies, that the original mean 
ing is obscured. "They make God no longer the bestower 
of good gifts on us, but the receiver of ours. Alas for such 
impiety! He proves from the ancient Church that the 
offering of the cucharist, as the name indicates, was origin 
ally a thank-offering of the gifts of tin; communicants for the 
benefit of the poor. The true sacrifice which we are to offer 


to God is our thanks, our possessions, and our whole person. 
He also objects to the use of the Latin language in the mass, 
and demands the vernacular. 

2. The sacrament of Baptism. Luther thanks God that 
this sacrament has been preserved uninjured, and kept from 
" the foul and impious monstrosities of avarice and supersti 
tion." He agrees essentially with the Roman doctrine, and 
considers baptism as a means of regeneration ; while Zwingli 
and Calvin regarded it merely as a sign and seal of preceding 
regeneration and church-membership. He even makes more 
of it than the Romanists, and opposes the prevailing view of 
St. Jerome, that penitence is a second plank of refuge after 
shipwreck. Instead of relying on priestly absolution, it is 
better to go back to the remission of sins secured in baptism. 
" When we rise out of our sins, and exercise penitence, we 
are simply reverting to the efficacy of baptism and to faith 
in it, whence we had fallen ; and we return to the promise 
then made to us, but which w r e had abandoned through our 
sin. For the truth of the promise once made always abides, 
and is ready to stretch out the hand and receive us when we 

As to the mode of baptism, he gives here, as elsewhere, his 
preference to immersion, which then still prevailed in Eng 
land and in some parts of the Continent, and which was not a 
point of dispute either between Romanists and Protestants, or 
between Protestants and Anabaptists ; while on the question 
of m/a/i-baptisni the Anabaptists differed from both. " Bap 
tism," he says, "is that dipping into water whence it takes 
its name. For, in Greek to baptize signifies to dip, and bap 
tism is a dipping." " Baptism signifies two things, death and 
resurrection ; that is, full and complete justification. When 
the minister dips the child into the water, this signifies death; 
when he draws him out again, this signifies life. Thus Paul 
explains the matter (Rom. G : 4). ... I could wish that the 
baptized should be totally immersed, according to the mean- 


ing of the word and the signification of the mystery; not 
that I think it necessary to do so, but that it would be well 
that so complete and perfect a thing as baptism should also 
be completely and perfectly expressed in the sign." 

Luther s view of baptismal regeneration seems to be incon 
sistent with his chief doctrine of justification by faith alone. 
He savs, It is not baptism which justifies any man, or is of 
anv advantage; but faith in that word of promise to which 
baptism is added: for this justifies and fullills the meaning of 
baptism. For faith is the submerging of the old man, and 
the emerging of the new man." Hut how does this apply to 
baptized infants, who <jan not be said to have faith in any 
proper sense of the term, though they have undoubtedly the 
capacity of faith? Luther here brings in the vicarious faith 
of the parents or the Church. Hut he suggests also the idea 
that faith is produced in the children, through baptism, on 
the ground of their religious receptivity. 

}. Lastly, Luther attacks the traditional nuutler of the 
sacraments. He allows "only two sacraments in the Church 
of God, Baptism and Bread; since it is in these alone that 
we see both a sign divinely instituted, and a promise of remis 
sion of sins." In some sense he retains also the sacrament 
of Penance, as a way and means of return to baptism. 

The rest of the seven U<>man sacraments confirmation, 
marriage, ordination, and extreme unction he rejects be 
cause they can not be proved from Scripture, and are not 
commanded by ( hrist. 

Matrimony has existed from the beginning of the world, 
and belongs to all mankind. Why, then, should it be called a 
sacrament? Paul calls it a "mystery," but not a sacrament, 
as translated in the Vulgate ( Kp. ~> : >-) ; or rather he speaks 
there of the union of ( hrist and the ( hureh, which is rellected 
in matrimony as in a sort of allegory. But the Pope has 
restricted this universal human institution by rigorous im 
pediments derived from spiritual alh nity and legal relation- 


ship. He forbids it to the clergy, and claims the power to 
annull rightful marriages, even against the will of one of the 
parties. " Learn, then, in this one matter of matrimony, 
into what an unhappy and hopeless state of confusion, hin 
drance, entanglement, and peril all things that are done in 
the Church have been brought by the pestilent and impious 
traditions of men ! There is no hope of a remedy, unless we 
do away with all the laws of men, call back the gospel of 
liberty, and judge and rule all things according to it alone." 
Luther closes with these words: "I hear a report that 
fresh bulls and papal curses are being prepared against me, 
by which I am urged to recant, or else to be declared a her 
etic. If this is true, I wish this little book to be a part of 
my future recantation, that they may not complain that their 
tyranny has puffed itself up in vain. I shall also shortly 
publish, Christ being my helper, such a recantation as the 
See of Rome has never yet seen or heard, thus abundantly 
testifying my obedience in the name of our Lord Jesus 
Christ. 1 Amen. 

" Ilostis Herodes impic, 

Christum venire quid times f 

Non arripit mortalia 

Qui reyna dat ccelestia. " 

46. Christian freedom. Luther 1 s Last Letter to the 
Pope. October, Io20. 

Von <lcr Freihcit fine* Christenmenschen, Wittenberg, 1520; often reprinted 
separately, and in the collected works of Luther. See WALCII, XIX. 
1200 S qq.; Erl. ed., XXVII. 173-200 (from the first ed.); Gerlach s ed. 
V. 5-4i>. The Latin edition, DC Libcrtate Christiana, was finished a 
little later, and has some additions; see Erl. ed. Opera Lat., IV. 200-255. 
Luther s letter to the Pope in Latin and German is printed also in DE 
WKTTE, I. 407-515. English version of the tract and the letter by BUCII- 
IIKIM, I. c. 95-137. 

1 Perhaps he means the burning of the Pope s bull, rather than, as O. v. 
Gerlach conjectures, the appendix to his later book against Ambrosius 
Catharinus, in which he tries to prove that the Pope is the Antichrist pre 
dicted by Dan. viii. 23-25. 


Although Rome had already condemned Luther, the papal 
delegate Miltitz still entertained the hope of a peaceful set 
tlement. He had extracted from Luther the promise to 
write to the Pope. He had a final interview with him and 
Melanchthon at Lichtenberg (now Lichtenburg, in the dis 
trict of Torgaii), in the convent of St. Antony, Oct. 11, 1520, 
a few days after Luther had seen the bull of excommunica 
tion. It was agreed that Luther should write a hook, and 
a letter in Latin and German to Leo X., and assure him 
that lie had never attacked his person, and that Dr. Kck was 
responsible for the whole trouble. The book was to be fin 
ished in twelve days, but dated back to Sept. (J in order to 
avoid the appearance of being occasioned by the Pope s bull. 

This is the origin of two of the most remarkable produc 
tions of Luther, his little book on "Christian Freedom," 
and a dedicatory letter to Leo X. 

The beautiful tract on "Christian Freedom" is a pearl 
among Luther s writings. It presents a striking contrast 
to his polemic treatises against Home, which were intended to 
break down the tyranny of popery. And yet it is a positive 
complement to them, and quite as necessary for a full under 
standing of his position. While opposing the Pope s tyranny, 
Luther was far from advocating the opposite extreme of li 
cense, lie was thoroughly imbued with the spirit of the 
Epistle to the Galatians, which protests against both extremes, 
and inspired the keynote to Luther s tract. He shows where 
in true liberty consists. He means liberty according to the 
gospel; liberty in Christ, not from Christ; and oilers this 
as a basis for reconciliation. He presents here a popular 
summary of Christian life. lie keeps free from all polemics, 
and writes in the best spirit of that practical mysticism which 
connected him with Staupitz and Tauler. 

The leading idea is: The Christian is the lord of all, and 
subject to none, by virtue of faith; he is the servant of all, 
and subject to every one, by virtue of love. Faith and love 


constitute the Christian: the one hinds him to God. the other 
to his fellow-man. The idea is derived from St. Paul, who 
says, "Though I was free from all men, I brought myself 
under bondage to all, that I might gain the more" (1 Cor. 
9:10); and "Owe no man any thing, save to love one an 
other" (Rom. 13:8). It was carried out by Christ, who 
was Lord of all things, yet born of a woman, born under the 
law that he might redeem them who were under the law 
(Gal. 4 : 4) ; who was at once in the form of God, and in the 
form of a servant (Phil. 2:6, 7). The Christian life is an 
imitation of the life of Christ, a favorite idea of the medi 
aeval mystics. 

Man is made free by faith, which alone justifies ; but it 
manifests itself in love, and all good works. The person 
must first be good before good works can be done, and good 
works proceed from a good person ; as Christ says, "A good 
tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree 
bring forth good fruit" (Matt. 7:18). The fruit docs not 
bear the tree, nor does the tree grow on the fruit ; but the 
tree bears the fruit, and the fruit grows on the tree. So it 
is in all handicrafts. A good or bad house does not make 
a good or bud builder, but the good or bad builder makes a 
good or bad house. Such is the case with the works of men. 
Such as the man himself is, whether in faith or in unbelief, 
such is his work ; good if it is done in faith, bad if in un 
belief. Faith, as it makes man a believer, so also it makes 
his works good ; but works do not make a believing man, 
nor a justified man. We do not reject works ; nay, we com 
mend them, and teach them in the highest degree. It is 
not on their own account that we condemn them, but on ac 
count of the perverse notion of seeking justification by them. 
"From faith flow forth love and joy in the Lord; and from 
love, a cheerful, willing, free spirit, disposed to serve our 
neighbor voluntarily, without taking any account of grati 
tude or ingratitude, praise or blame, gain or loss. Its object 


is not to laymen under obligations ; nor does it distinguish 
between friends and enemies, or look to gratitude or ingrati 
tude ; but most freely and willingly it spends itself and its 
goods, whether it loses them through ingratitude, or gains 
good-will. For thus did its Father, distributing all things to 
all men abundantly and freely, making his sun to rise upon 
the just and the unjust. Thus, too, the child does and en 
dures nothing except from the free joy with which it delights 
through Christ in (iod, the giver of such great gifts/ . . . 

" Who, then, can comprehend the riches and glory of the 
Christian life? It can do all things, has all things, and is in 
want of nothing; is lord over sin, death, and hell, and, at the 
same time, is the obedient and useful servant of all. But 
alas! it is at this day unknown throughout the world; it is 
neither preached nor sought after, so that we are quite igno 
rant about our own name, whv we are and are called Chris 
tians. We are certainly called so from Christ, who is not 
absent, but dwells among us, provided we believe in hirn^; 
and are reciprocally and mutually one the Christ of the 
other, doing to our neighbor as Christ does to us. But now, 
in the doctrine of men, we are taught onlv to seek after 
merits, rewards, and things which are already ours; and we 
have made of Christ a task -master far more severe than 
Moses." . . . 

k% We conclude, then, that a Christian man docs not live in 
and for himself, but in Christ and in his neighbor, or else is 
no Christian; in Christ by faith, in his neighbor by love. 
Ily faith he is carried upwards above himself to (iod, and by 
love he descends below himself to his neighbor, still always 
abiding in (iod and his love; as Christ says, * Verily I say 
unto yon, hereafter ye shall see the heaven opened, and the 
angels of (iod ascending and descending upon the Son of 
man " (John 1 : ~>1 ). 

In the Latin text Luther adds some excellent remarks 
against those who misunderstand and distort spiritual liberty, 


turn it into an occasion of carnal license, and show their 
freedom by their contempt of ceremonies, traditions, and 
human laws. St. Paul teaches us to walk in the middle path, 
condemning either extreme, and saying, " Let not him that 
eateth despise him that eateth not ; and let not him that 
eateth not judge him that eatetli " (Rom. 14 : 3). We must 
resist the hardened and obstinate ceremonialists, as Paul 
resisted the Judaizers who would compel Titus to be circum 
cised ; and we must spare the weak who are not yet able to 
apprehend the liberty of faith. We must fight against the 
wolves, but on behalf of the sheep, not against the sheep. 

This Irenicon must meet with the approval of every true 
Christian, whether Catholic or Protestant. It breathes the 
spirit of a genuine disciple of St. Paul. It is full of heroic 
faith and childlike simplicity. It takes rank with the best 
books of Luther, and rises far above the angry controversies 
of his age, during which lie composed it, in the full possession 
of the positive truth and peace of the religion of Christ. 1 

Luther sent the book to Pope Leo X., who was too worldly- 
minded a man to appreciate it; and accompanied the same 
with a most singular and undiplomatic, yet powerful polemic 
letter, which, if the Pope ever read it, must have filled him 
with mingled feelings of indignation and disgust. In his 
first letter to the Pope (1518), Luther had thrown himself at 
his feet as an obedient son of the vicar of Christ ; in his 

1 Kustlin (Mnrt. Litth., vol. I. 305 sq.): "Die Schrift von der Freiheit 
eines Christenmenschen ist. tin tief-reliyioser Traktat. . . . Sic it tin ruhiyes, 
positives Zeuynix der Wahrheit, vor icclchcr die, Waff en und Bandr der Fin- 
stern ift von sclbst zu nichte werdcn musscn. Hie zeiyt uns den tiefsten Grund 
des christlichcn Bewusstseins und Lebcns in eincr edlen, seliyen llulie und 
tiichcrheit, icelche die ilber itnn hinyehenden Woyen und Stiirme dcs Kamp- 
fes nicht zu erschilttcrn vermoyen. Sie zeiyt zuyleich, wie fext Luther xclbst 
aiif diesem Grunde stand, indem er e.ben im Ho/iepunkt des Kampfgedranget 
sie zu verfassen fuhiy tear." It is perhaps characteristic that Janssen, who 
gives one-sided extracts from the two other reformatory works of Luther, 
passes the tract on " Christian Liberty " in complete silence. Cardinal II er- 
genrother likewise ignores it. 


second letter (1510), lie still had addressed him as a humble 
subject, yet refusing to reeant his conscientious convictions: 
in his third and last letter lie addressed him as an equal, 
speaking to him with great respect for his personal character 
(even beyond his deserts), hut denouncing in the severest 
terms the Roman See, and comparing him to a lamb among 
wolves, and to Daniel in the den of lions. The Popes, he 
says, are vicars of Christ because Christ is absent from 
Rome. 1 Miltitz and the Augustinian brethren, who urged 
him to write an apologetic letter to Leo, must have been 
sorely disappointed ; for it destroyed all prospects of recon 
ciliation, if they had not been destroyed already. 

After some complimentary words about Leo, and protest 
ing that he had never spoken disrespectfully of his person, 
Luther goes on to say, 

"The C hureh of Homo, formerly the most holy of all churches, has 
become ihe most lawless den of thieves, the most shameless of all brothels, 
the very kingdom of sin, death, ami hell; so that not even Antichrist, if he 
were to eome, could devise any addition to its wickedness. 

" Meanwhile you, Leo, are sitting like a lamb in the midst of wolves, like 
Daniel iu the midst of lions, and, with Ezekiel, you dwell amoiii, scorpions. 
What opposition can you alow make to these monstrous evils? Take to 
yourself three or four of the most learned and best of the cardinals. What 
are these amoiiij so many . You would all perish by poison, before you could 
undertake, to decide on a remedy. It is all over with the court of Home: the 
wrath of (iod has come upon her to the uttermost. She hates councils, she 
dreads to be reformed, ^he cannot restrain the madness of her impiety; she tills 
Up the sentence passed on her mother, of whom it is said, We would have 
healed Babylon, but she is not healed; let us forsake her. It had been your 
duty, and that of your cardinals, to apply a remedy to these evils; but this 
gout laughs at the physician s hand, and the chariot does not obey the reins. 
Under the influence of these feeling I have always grieved that you. most 
excellent Leo, who were worthy of a better ai;e, have; been made pontiff in 
this. For the Roman court is not worthy of you and those like you, but of 
Satan himself, who in truth is more the ruler in that liabylon than you arc. 

"Oh, would that, having laid aside that ijlory which your most abandoned 
enemies declare to be yours, you wen* living rather in the oflice of a private 

1 " Kin Stntt/tdltcr tut in A >icci nheil xviitfit 11< rrn ein tilutthnlter." 

22(3 THE CiKUMAX KEFOIIMATIOX. A.D. 1517 TO 15-10. 

priost, or on your paternal inheritance ! In that glory none are worthy to 
glory, except the race of Iscariot, the children of perdition. For what hap 
pens in your court, Leo, except that, the more wicked and execrable any 
man is, the more, prosperously he can use your name and authority for the 
ruin of the property and souls of men, for the multiplication of crimes, for 
the oppression of faith and truth, and of the whole Church of (iod . () Leo! 
in reality most unfortunate, and sitting on a most perilous throne: verily 
I tell you the truth, hecause I wish you well; for if Bernard felt compassion 
for his Anastasius at a time when the Roman See, though even then most 
corrupt, was as yet ruling with hetter hope than now, why should not we 
lament, to whom so much additional corruption and ruin has happened in 
three; hundred years ? 

" Is it not true that there is nothing under the vast heavens more corrupt, 
more pestilential, more hateful, than the court of Rome ? She incomparably 

surpasses the impiety of the 
Turks, so that in very truth she, 
who was formerly the gate of 
heaven, is now a sort of open 
mouth of hell, and such a mouth 
as, under the urgent wrath of 
God, can not he. blocked up ; one 
course alone being left to us 
wretched men, to call back and 
save some few, if we can, from 
that Roman gulf. 

" Behold, Leo my father, with 
what purpose and on what prin 
ciple it is that I have stormed 

LEOX. From his Portrait by Raphael. a - ainst that swlt of P"tilencc. 

I am so far from having felt any 

rage against your person, that I even hoped to gain favor with you and to 
aid in your welfare, by striking actively and vigorously at that your prison, 
nay, your hell. For, whatever the efforts of all intellects can contrive against 
the confusion of that impious court will be advantageous to you and to your 
welfare, and to many others with you. Those who do harm to her are doing 
your work ; those who in every way abhor her are glorifying Christ ; in short, 
those are Christians who are not Romans. . . . 

"In fine, that I may not approach your Holiness empty-handed, I bring 
with me this little book, 1 published under your name, as a good omen of 
the establishment of peace and of good hope. By this you may perceive 
MI what pursuits I should prefer and be able to occupy myself to more 
profit, if I were allowed, or had been hitherto allowed, by your impious flat 
terers. It is a small book, if you look to the paper; but, unless 1 mistake, 

1 De Libcrtatt Christiana. 


it is a summary of tin* Christian lift- put together in small compas, if you 
apprehend its meaning. I. in my poverty, have no other present t<> make 
YOU; nor do you need any thing else than to be enriched by a spiritual gift. 
I commend myself to your Holiness, whom may the Lord Jesus preserve 
for ever. Amen. 

" WITTENBEKU, Cth September, 1520." 

47. The Bull of Excommunication. June lo, 1Z20. 

The Bull " E.r xr</f, Dmninc," in the linlltiriunt I!<inunti, ed. CAK. Coctjt E- 
LIXKS, Tom. III., Pars III. (ah anno 14:11 ad 1-VJ1), pp. 4S7-4u:{. and in 
UAYXALIU s (continuator of Uaronius): Annul. />,/., ad .inn. l. c o. no. 
51 (Tom. XX. fol. : ,( >:;-:)( Hi). Raynaldus calls Luther " ujiostittuin nifun- 
disnimiun," and takes the bull from Cochheus, who, besides Eck and 
Vlemberg (a Protestant apostate), is the chief authority for his meager 
and distorted account of the German Reformation. A copy of the origi 
nal edition of the bull is in the Astor Library, Ne\v York. See NOTKS. 

U. v. HrTTKX published the bull with biting glosses: JiiiUa !>>< , mi L<-<>n i* 
contra rrro/v.s Lnth<ri it wijiuiciitui, or Die ylosxirte linllc (in Hutten s 
Ojxru, ed. Bock ing. V. :5<U-:;;;. {: in the Krl. ed. of Luther s O/. Lot., 
IV. L > (!l-. ;<)4; also in CJerman in WAI.< 11, XV. Mill sq<|. ; comp. STKAO-: 
I , r. Hull in, p. . 5:5* s(i<|.). The glosses in smaller type interrupt tin- 
text, or are put on the margin. LrriiKi:: \ <>n den n-in-n Eckixi-ln n 
Ilnlli-n uuil Lii ji n (Sept. 1.">JO); A<b\ c.r<rr<il>ih in Anlirln ixli liiillum 
(Nov. 1">-"); IT/ / / die Hnll it </.s Kndrftrixt* (Nov. I.">L (); the same 
look as the preceding Latin work, but shai i>er and stronger); \V>ii->nn 
din I li/iHtu nnd Kciner Juwjcr Iliirficr rcrhrnnnt Kind (Lat. and (Jerm.. 
Dec. i:,20); all in \V.\i.< II, XV. fol. HJ74-UM7; Krl. e<l., XXIV. 14-ir,}, 
and O/;. Lut. V. liiii- J:;*; "J")1- J71. LfTllKIt s letters to Sjialatin and 
others on the bull of excommunication, in I)e \Vctte, I. ois-. >, 5ii. 

RANKK: I. 2 ( .4-:5oi. MKUI.K i/Ai DK.M;, Hk. VI. eh. III. S M .J. HAUKX- 
iJArii, III. liM>-ii)2. KAIIM^: I. :;ix;-:;41. K>STLIX: I. Ji7lK3s^. 
KOLOK: 1. L Ht s|(j. .]AN>SI;N: II. ins sqj. 

After tlic Leipzig disputation, Dr. Ki-k went to Koine, and 
Btrained every nerve to secure the condemnation of Luther 
and his followers. 1 Cardinals Canipeggi and Cajetan, Prierins 
and Aleander, aided him. Cajetan was sick, but had hini- 

1 As Luther said, to rouse, "the abyss of hell" (Ahf/ruml df-r 7/67/r) 
against him. ?>k seems to have IMMMI acting also in the interest of the 
banking (inn of Fugger in Augsburg, which carried on the financial transac 
tions between Germany and Italy, including the transmission of indulgence- 
money, bee Kanke, 1. 2U7. 


self carried on his couch into the sessions of the consistory. 
With considerable difficulty the bull of excommunication 
was drawn up in May, and after several amendments com 
pleted June 15, 1520. 1 

Nearly three years had elapsed since the publication of 
Luther s Ninety-five Theses. In the mean time he had 
attacked with increasing violence the very foundations uf 
the Roman Church, had denounced popery as an antichris- 
tian tyranny, and had dared to appeal from the Pope to a 
general council, contrary to the decisions of Pius II. and 
Julius II., who declared such an appeal to be heresy. Be 
tween the completion and the promulgation of the bull, he 
went still further in his " Address to the German Nobilitv, 
and the book on the "Babylonian Captivity," and made a 
reconciliation impossible except by an absolute surrender, 
which was a moral impossibility for him. Rome could not 
tolerate Lutheranism any longer without ceasing to be Koine. 
She delayed final action only for political and prudential con 
siderations, especially in view of the election of a new Ger 
man Emperor, and the influential voice of the Elector Frede 
rick, who was offered, but declined, the imperial crown. 

The bull of excommunication is the papal counter-mani 
festo to Luther s Theses, and condemns in him the whole 
cause of the Protestant Reformation. Therein lies its his 
torical significance. It was the last bull addressed to Latin 
Christendom as an undivided whole, and the first which was 
disobeyed by a large part of it. Instead of causing Luther 

i Hanke (I. 20S) dates the bull from June 10; Walch (XV. 1001) from 
Juno 24; hut most historians (Gieseler, Kalinis, Kostlin, Lenz, Janssen, Iler- 
genrother, etc.) from June. 15. The last is correct, for the hull is dated 
" MDXX. xvii. Kal. Julii." According to the Koman mode of reckoning 
backwards, counting the day of departure, and adding two to the number of 
days of the preceding month, the Kalendw Julii fall on June 15. IJanke 
probably overlooked the fact that June had only twenty-nine days in the 
Julian Calendar. Janssen refers to an essay of Druffel on the date of the 
bull in the " Sitzungsberichte der Bayer Academic," 1SSO, p. 572; but he 
does not give the result. 


and his friends t< he burnt, it was burnt by Luther. It is an 
elaborate document, prepared with great care in the usual 
heavy, turgid, and tedious style of the curia. It breathes the 
genuine spirit tt the pupal hierarchy, and mingles the tones of 
priestly arrogance, concern for truth, abomination of heresy 
and schism, fatherly sorrow, and penal severity. The Pope 
speaks as if he were the personal embodiment of the truth, 
the infallible judge of all matters of faith, and the dispenser 
of eternal rewards and punishments. 

He begins with the words of Ps. 74:22: "Arise. () (iod, 
plead thine own cause : remember how the foolish man re- 
proacheth tliee daily. Forget not the voice of thine enemies: 
the tumult of those that rise up against thee incrcaseth con 
tinually." He calls St. Peter, St. Paul, and the whole body 
of the saints, to aid against "the boar out of the wood" and 
" the wild beast tit the field" that had broken into the vine 
yard of the Lord, to waste and destroy it ( Ps. iSO:lo). I It- 
expresses deej) sorrow at the revival of the Bohemian and 
other heresies in the noble German nation which had received 
the empire from the Pope, and shed so much precious blood 
against heresy. Then he condemns forty-one propositions 
selected from Luther s books, as heretical, or at least scan 
dalous and offensive to pious ears, and sentences all his books 
to the flames. Among the errors named are those relating 
to the sacramental and hierarchical system, especially the 
authority of the Pope and the ( Roman) Church. The denial 
of free will (Hln rum nrlitrlutn) after the fall is also con 
demned, though clearly taught by St. Augustin. I>ut 
Luther s fundamental doctrine of justification by faith is not 
expressly mentioned. The sentences are torn from the con 
nection, and presented in the most objectionable form as 
mere negations of Catholic doctrines. The positive views of 
the Reformer are not stated, or distorted. 

For the person of Luther, the Pope professes fatherly love 
and forbearance, and entreats him once more, by the mercies 


of Gud. and the blood of Christ, to repent and recant within 
sixty days after the publication of the bull in the Branden 
burg, Meissen, and Merseburg dioceses, and promises to re 
ceive him graciously like the prodigal son. But failing to 
repent, he and his adherents will be cut off, as withered 
branches, from the vine of Christ, and be punished as obsti 
nate heretics. This means that they shall be burned; for 
the bull expressly condemns the proposition of Luther which 
denounces the burning of heretics as "contrary to the will of 
the Holy Spirit." All princes, magistrates, and citizens are 
exhorted, on threat of excommunication and promise of re 
ward, to seize Luther and his followers, and to hand him over 
to the apostolic chair. Places which harbor him or his fol 
lowers are threatened with the interdict. Christians are 
forbidden to read, print, or publish any of his books, and 
are commanded to burn them. 

\Ve may infer from this document in what a state of intel 
lectual slavery Christendom would be at the present time if 
the papal power had succeeded in crushing the Reformation. 
It is difficult to estimate the debt we owe to Martin Luther 
for freedom and progress. 

The promulgation and execution of the bull were intrusted 
to two Italian prelates, Aleander and Caraccioli, and to Dr. 
Kck. The personal enemy of Luther, who had been especially 
active in procuring the bull, was now sent back in triumph 
with the dignity of a papal nuncio, and even with the ex 
traordinary power of including bv name several followers of 
Luther, among whom he singled out Carlstadt and Dolzig 
of Wittenberg, Adelmann of Augsburg, Kgranus of Zwickau, 
and the humanists Pirkheimer and Spengler of Niirnberg. 
The selection of Kck. the most unpopular man in Germany, 
was a great mistake of the Pope, as Roman historians admit, 
and it helped the cause of the Reformation. 1 

1 Pallavioini nnd Muratori oonsuro Leo for commissioning Erk. Jnnssen 
says (II. 10!)): " Tt.s w(tr cln trauriyer Miwjrijf, duss mit dcr VerkundlyunQ 

47. Tin: nn.L or EXCOMMUNICATION. 231 

The bull was published and carried out without much dif 
ficulty in Mavence, Cologne, and Louvain; and Luther s books 
were committed to the llaines, with the sanction of the new 
Emperor. But in Northern Germany, which was the proper 
seat of the conflict, it met with determined resistance, and was 
defeated. Kck printed and placarded the bull at Ingolstadt, 
at Mei>sen (Sept. 21 ), at Mer.scburg (Sept. -~>), and at Bran 
denburg (Sept. - . ). lint in Leip/ig, where a year before he 
had achieved his boasted victory over Luther in public debate, 
he was iiiMiltcd by the students (die hundred and lifty had 
come over from Wittenberg), and took llight in a convent; 
the bnli was bespattered, and torn to pieces. 1 lie fared still 
wor>e in Kiiurt, whc re he had been ridiculed and held up to 
scorn as a second llochstraten in the satire Hccius Jedulatus 
(printed at Krfurt in March, 1.~> 20) : the theological faculty 
refused to publish the bull; and the students threw the 
printed copies into the water, saying, k It is only a water- 
bubble (lnilln)i let it lloat on the water." 2 

un<l ] ll*ti-t /,"// / >li r ll iUi 1 in imlirrrt n ili ntxrlirn DUirrxfn Luthrr s (!<>J- 
ncr Jnl, a, n> l .<-k In ini /r<t it iriifli ." The same view \v;is previously ex 
pressed liy Kampsehultc (l) n- I niri rx iitit Krfurt in ilinui \ < rli. zn <l<m 
IlHiiniitlxiimx ini l lir l t </i>i-iiiiiti<>n. Trier, ]s:,X-<;o, Th. IF.. j>. :}(\), although 
lu- fully jiistilicil tin- ]>;i]i;il hull as :i lu rossity for th; lloinaii Church, 
and chai-;iclcfi/.-(l ils i<.in- as coinnarat ivcly mild in vic\v of Luther s r<i<lir<il<- 
l iiiMhir^ii l<i,il,-<-,i and liis violence of lanijua^o. Audiu and Arehhishop 

SpJlldill J defend the I oMe. 

1 Letter of MilJii/. to Fahian von Feilit/sch, Oct. 2, l.Vjn. In Waleh, XV. 
1S72. Luther \\Tnie to >;itiu. Oct. :!. If/JO ( I )e \Vette, I. I .H ). that he 
had ju>t lieard of the had reception and danger f Kck at Leip/ii;. and hoped 
that he niiyhl escape \v it !i his life, hut that his devices inii^ht come to naught. 

* " It illtl i xt, in IK/II, i unfit." 1 So Lllther reports in a letter to C.ivH ell- 
dorf, Oct. I D (I)e \\ ette. I. .".jo), and in a letter to Spalatin. Nov. I (I. .".-Jii 
8q.). Kampsehulte (!.<-. \ I. :;7 s<|-|- -i v s :i full account of Kck s troiiltles at 
Erfurt, from a rare printed placard, Intiiinilin Krji/nii- linixi i>r<> Mm-linn 
Lntl.n-n (pr.*.-r\e.| l.y i:i.-derer. and .|Uot.-d also l,y Cies.-l.-r. III. I. SI, 
Gorm. .-.I., nr IV. .": ,, A imlo-Ain 1. ). to the effect that the u hole llieolnieal 
faculty stirred up all the students, calling u]>on them to resist "with hand 
and fo,,t" the furious Pharisees and slanderers of Luther, u ho wished to cast 
him out of tin- Church and into hell. Luther makes no mention of such a 
strange Action oi the faculty, which is scarcely credihle as it ineluded strict 

232 THE GERMAN REFORMATION". A.D. 1517 TO 1530. 

Eek sent the bull to the rector of the University of Wit 
tenberg, Oct. 3, 1520, with the request to prohibit the teach 
ing of any of the condemned propositions of Luther, and 
threatening that, in case of disobedience, the Pope would 
recall all the liberties and privileges of the university. The 
professors and counselors of the Elector declined the pro 
mulgation for various reasons. 

The Elector Frederick was on the way to Aachen to assist 
at the coronation of Charles V., but was detained at Cologne 
by the gout. There he received the bull from Aleander 
after the mass, Nov. 4, and was urged with eloquent words 
to execute it, and to punish Luther or to send him to Rome; 
but he cautiously deferred an answer, and sought the advice 
of Erasmus in the presence of Spalatin. The famous scholar 
gave it as his judgment, that Luther s crime consisted in 
having touched the triple crown of the Pope and the stom 
achs of the monks; 1 he also wrote to Spalatin, after the 
interview, that the Pope s bull offended all upright men 
by its ferocity and was unworthy of a meek vicar of Christ. 2 
The Elector was thus confirmed in his favorable view of 
Luther, lie sent Spalatin to Wittenberg, where some stu 
dents had left in consequence of the bull ; but Spalatin was 
encouraged, and found that Melanchthon had about six hun 
dred, Luther four hundred hearers, and that the church was 
crowded whenever Luther preached. A few weeks afterward 
the Pope s bull was burnt. 

1 " Lutherns j>rc< a> !f hi <1i(obi(s, ncinpe quod tctl jit coronnm Pontijlcis ct 
veutrcN tnonuclioriiin." Spalatin, Annul. ifS sq. 

2 " I>iill<c Hd-ritln prohox oiiine* offeiulit y at indlf/nn niitixsiino Christi 
r/V O /o. M Erasmus soon afterwards called back his A.r!<>i<it<i )>r<> ran.ta 
Lnt in //, which he had sent to Spalatin. They were, however, published 
(Erl. ed. of Luther s O/. Lnt., vol. V. ^:js-LM-J). About the same time he 
advix-d the Emperor to submit the case of Luther to impartial judges of 
dill erent nations, or to a general council. See Gieseler, IV. 50 scj., Am. ed. 


ICc U. 



uus 5cruoru3 Dti/ jk d 

ocrpctuam ref mrfrioriam 
xurge dnc & cudtca caufa} 

euo? urn/eon)} qu* 
ab infipfentilbus fiuot eota 
die / IncBna aurcm toam ad 



furus ad patrrm/efus curam/ rrgimen / 8^ 
rioncm Pctr o tanqua capfti/et tuoT /cario/ eiaaf<^ fuc* 
ccflfonbus mftar rriumphantis Ecckfrc cSmififif/mer 
minarc nit/tur cam.Apcr dc/ilua/S^ fingularts fetus dc 
pafcieam,#urge rccre/& propaR oralf cura prcfata ti 
bi(ut preftrrurjaJu/ntrus dcnjandata/fetcmdc m caufai 
R.oTr5afiEcckfia:/MaCris: omnium ccclcfiarus/ 
tu/iubefitc E^o/tuofangufnc 
quaim fkot ca prcmonr cc di gnatus 
Mogiftr/mendaccs fntrcduccntes (cftas 
perduionis libi ccJercm mterkum fuperducenrcs/ quo^> 
lingua ignis eft/ft", Jltum rnalum/pfcni ucncno tnor 
tifcro/qui ^elu^f toarum habcnrcs/ & contcntfonrs 
fa cordibus fufs/glonantur/^ mendaces funtadutfffus 
ueritatem. Exurgc tu quocp qucfumus 0u JfAjiJj cam 
ma doflrina/ac pari matcyrio illuroinsfti/atcp jlloRra^ 
ft/Jam enT furgic nouus Porphirius/quificut ilk chin 
fanftcs Apoftolosioiuftc momord;t, tea hfc faoftos 



As I do not find tlit- hull in any of tin- Protestant or Roman-Catholic 
churrh histories which I have consulted (except the Annnit of Kaynaldus), 
I give it ln-re in full as transcribed from an original copy in possession of the 
Astor Library, New York (probably the only one on the American Continent), 
together with facsimiles of titlepage and first page. The pamphlet contains 
twenty pages, small quarto, and is printed continuously, like ancient MSS. 
I have divided it into sections, with headings, and noted the departures of 
Cocquelines and Kaynaldus from the original. 


LKO Episcopus Servus Servorum Dei. 1 
Ad perpetuam rei mcinoriam. 

[Proomium. The Pope invoke* <J<nl, St. IVter and St. Paul, and all the oaint*, aifairmt the 
new i-iii-miert of the Church.] 

Exurge. Domine, et judica eausam tuam, memor esto improperiorum 
tuorum, enrum, qiue ah iiiMpientibus liunt tola die; indina aurem tuam ad 
preees nostras, (|iioniam Mirrexernnt vulpes qmerentes demoliri vincuin, cujus 
tu torcular calcasti solus, et ascensunis ad Patrem ejus curam, regimen et 
administratioiiein Petro tanquam capiti et tuo vieario, ejus<iue successoribus 
instar triumphantis Eccleshe eommisisti: exterminare nititur earn aper tie 
Silva, et singularis ferns depasci [lur] earn. Exurge, Pel re, et pro pastoral! 
cnra pnefata tilii (ut ]>r;efertur) divinitus demandata, intende in eausam 
sanct;e IIoinaiKe Eeclesi;e, Matris omnium eeclesiarum, ac fidei magistne, 
quam tu. jubeiite Deo. t uo sanguine consecrasti, contra quam, sieut tu prtu- 
inoncre dignatus es, insurgunt magistri mcndaces introducentes sectas per- 
ditionis, sibi celerem inieritnm superduccntes,- (piorum lingua ignis est, 
Inquictum malum. plena vcncno mortifero, <|iii /ehim amanim habentes et 
COntentlones in conlilms suis, gloriantur. et mendaces snnt ndversus veri- 
tatem. p xiiri, * tu <|iio<|iie. (|ii;i-Mimus, Paule, qui earn tim dnctrinu et pari 
inartyrio illuminasti atque illustrasti. .lam euim surgit novus Porphyrins; 
quia sicut ille olim sanctos . \postolos injuste momonlit. ita hie sanctos Pon- 
tifices ])r:edecessores nostros contra tuam doctrinal!) eos non obsecrando, setl 
Increpando, mordere. lacerare, ac ul>i caus;u su: :{ difTidit, ad convicia acce- 
dere noii veretur, more, hiereticorum, quorum (ut inqnit Mieronymus) ulti- 
iiimn ])r;esidium <-st. ut cum eonspiciant causas suas danmatum iri. incipiant 
virus serpentis lingu& difTuixlen*: et cum se victos eonspiciant, ad contu- 
inelias prosilire. Nam li % et hiereses esse ad exercitat ioiieiu fidelinm lu 
dixeris oportere, eas tameii. ne incrementum aceipiant, neve vulp< cuhu 
coalescant, in ipso ortu, te intereedente et adjuvante, extingui neeesse est. 

> The heading in nmlttiil l>> Kuynuldui. * Itiiyiialdtia : m/irrtntlucfntet. 

3 C ociiUfliiu-n iniiiti* itt t. 


Exurgat denique, 1 omnis sanctorum, ac reliqua universalis Ecclesia, cujus 
vcra sacraruin literaruni interprctatione posthabitd, quidain, quorum mentein 
pater inoiidacii excsecavit, ex veteri Inereticorum instituto, apud sernetipsos 
sapientcs, scripturas easdem aliter quam Spiritus sanctus flagitet, proprio 
duuitaxat sensu ambitionis, aurasque popularis causa, teste Apostolo, inter- 
pretantur, imino vero torquent et adulterant, ita ut juxta Ilieronyraum jam 
non sit evangelium Christi, sed hominis, aut quod pejus est, diaboli. Ex 
urgat, inquam, prtefata Ecclesia sancta Dei, ft una cum beatissimis Apostolis 
pncfatis 2 apud Ueum omnipotentem intercedat, ut purgatis ovium suarum 
erroribus, eliminatisque a fidelium finibus lueresibus universis Ecclesiae suie 
sanctai pacem et uuitatem conservare dignetur. 

[The errors of the Greeks and Bohemians revived by Luther and his followers.] 

Dudiim siquidem 3 quod pne animi angustia et ma-rore exprimere vix 
possumus, fide dignortim relatu ac fain a publica referent e ad nostrum per- 
venit auditum, imino vero, proh dolor! oculis nostris vidimus ac legimus, 
multos et varios errores qnosdam videlicet jam per Concilia ac Pnedeces- 
sorum nostrorum constitutiones damnatos, Ineresim etiam Graicorum et 
Bohemicam expresse continentes: alios vero respective, vel luereticos, vel 
falsos, vel scandalosos, vel piarum aurium offensivos, vel simplicinm men- 
tium seductivos, a falsis fidei cultoribns, qni per superbam curiositatem 
inundi gloriam cupientes, contra Apostoli doctrinam pins sapere volunt, 
qu.un oporteat; quorum garrulitas (ut inquit Hieronynms) sine scripturarum 
auctoritate non haberet tidem, nisi viderentur perversam doctrinam etiam 
divinis testimoniis, male tamen interpretatis, roboraiv: a (iiiorum oculis Dei 
timor recessit, humani generis lioste suggcrente, noviter suscitatos, et nuper 
apud quosdam leviores in inclyta natione Gcrmanica seminatos. 

[The Germans, who received the empire from the Pope, were formerly most zealous against 
heresy, but now give birth to the most dangerous errors.] 

Quod eo inagis dolemus ibi 4 evenisse, quod eandem nationem et nos et 
Prredecessores nostri in visceribus semper gesserimns caritatis. Nam post 
translatum ex G reels a Pvomana Ecclesia in eosdem Germanos imperium, 
iidem Pnedecessores nostri et nos ejusdem Ecclesia, 1 advocatos defcnsoresque 
ex fis semper accepimns; quos quidem Germanos, C atbolica) veritatis vere 
germanos, constat lueresum [lueresium] acerrimos oppugnatores 5 semper fuis- 
se: cujus rei testes sunt laudabiles ilhe constitutiones Germanorum Impera- 
tonun pro libertate Ecclesise, iro<ine expellendis exterminandisque ex omni 
(icnni .nia lui reticis, sub gravissimis poL iiis, etiam amissionis terrarum et 
dominionini, contra reccptatores vel non expellcntcs olim edit a 1 , et a nostris 
Prtedecessoribus confirmaUe, (jiue si bodie servarentur, et nos et ipsi utique 
bac molestia careremus. Tcstis est in Concilio Constantii nsi Hnssitarnm ac 
Wicclcilistarum, necnon llieronyini Pragensis damnata ac puuita pertidia. 

1 RaynaldtiH omits flenique. 2 Itaynaldus omits prnfnti*. 3 Omitted by Ilaynaldus. 
* Omitted by UaynalduH. B Kaynaldus: jtropitynutores. 


Testis est totiens contra Bohemos Oormanorum sanguis cffusus. Test is 
denique est pnedictornm erroruin, sen multorum ex eis per t oloniensem et 
Lovaniensem Universitates, utpote agri dominici piissimas religiosissimasque 
cult rices, non minus doeta qiiam vera ac saneta confntatio. reprobatio, et 
damnatio. Mnlta quoque alia allegare possemus, qua?, ne bistoriam texere 
videanmr, pnetermittenda censuimus. 

Pro pastoralis igitur otlicii, divina gratia nobis injuneti eura, quam geri- 
mus. pr.edictorum erroruin virus pestifernm ulterius tolerare sen dissimulare 
sine Cbristiame religionis nota, atque ortbodoxic tidei injuria nullo inodo 
possumus. Eorum autem erroruin aliquos pnt-sentibus duximus inferendos, 
quorum tenor sequitur, et est talis: 

[Forty-one heretical sentences selected from Luther s writing!*.] 

I. Ila-retica sententia est, sed usitata. Sacramenta novif legis justifican- 
tom gratiam illis dare, qui non ponunt obicem. 

II. In puero post baptisnuun negare remanens pcceatum, est Paulnm et 
Christum simtil conculeare. 

III. Fomes peceati, etiam si nullnm adsit actuale peccatum, moratnr ex- 
euntcm a eorpore animam ab ingressu co-li. 

IV. Imperfecta caritas moritnri fert serum necessario magnum timorem, 
qui se solo satis est facere pn-nam pnrgatorii, et impedit introitum regni. 

V. Tres esse partes po iu tentiic, contrit ionon, confessionem, et satisfac- 
tionem, non e>t fundatum in sacra scriptnra, nee in antiquis sanctis C bris- 
tianis doctor! l)iis. 

VI. Contritio, qiue paratus per discussionom, eollectionem, 1 et detesta- 
tionom peecatorum, <|tia qttis reco^itat annos stios in amaritudine aniline 
su;t>, i)onderando peccatorum gravitatem, multitudinem, fo-ditatcm. amission- 
em luterme beatitudinis, ac letenue damnatiouis aequisitionein, luec contritio 
faeit hypocritam. iiiimo magis peceatorem. 

\ll. Verissimum est proverbium, et omnium doctrina de contritionibus 
hucusque data pnustantius, de eetero non facere, summa pcenitentia, optima 
pa-nitentia. n<va vita. 

^ III. Nullo modo pnesiunas confiteri peccata venialia, sed nee omnia 
mortalia. quia impossibile est. ut omnia mortalia cognoscas: mule in primi- 
tiva Ecclesia sobim manifesta mortalia confitebantur. 

IX. Dnm volnnuis omnia pure < > onliteri. nibil aliinl facimus, |iiam (jnod 
Bttlserlconliaj Dei nibil volnmns relinqiiere ignoseendmn. 

X. Peceata non stint illi remis-a. ni-i remit tente sacenlote eredat sibi re- 
mitti; immo peccatum mam-ret nisi remissiim crederet; non enim stillicit 
remissio jieceati ct gratia- donatio. sed ojiortet etiam credere esse remissnm. 

XI. N ullo modo con fidas absolvi jiropt-r tuam contritionem, sed j)ropter 
verbtim Cbri.sti: * Quodcumtpue solveris," etc. Sic, inqnam, confide, si saecr- 

1 CocfjucllneB reads cotltitionem, contrary to the original which plainly reudn cotlrctio- 


dotis obtinuoris absolutionem, et crede fortiter te absolutum; et absolutus 
vere eris, 1 quidquid sit de contritionc. 

XII. Si per iinpossibile confessus non essct contritus, ant sacerdos non 
serio, sed joco absolveret, si tameii credat se absolutum, verissime est absolu 

XIII. In sacramento poenitentise ac remissione culpa? non plus facit Papa 
aut episcopus, quam infimus sacerdos; immo ubi non est sacerdos, seque tan- 
tuni quilibet Christianus, etiam si mulier, aut puer esset. 

XIV. Nullus debet sacerdoti respondere, se esse contritum, ncc 2 sacerdos 

XV. Magnus est error eorum, qtii ad sacramenta Eueharistire accedunt 
huic inriixi, quod sint confessi, quod non sint sibi conscii alicujus peccati 
mortalis; quod priemiserint orationes suas et pneparatoria ; omnes ill! ad 3 
judicium sibi manducant et bibunt; sed si credant et confidant se gratiam ibi 
consecuturos, haac sola fides facit eos puros et clignos. 

XVI. Consultum videtur, quod Ecclesia in coimmmi concilio 4 statueret, 
laicos sub utraque specie coramunicandos ; nee Bohemi communicantes sub 
utraque specie 5 sunt luuretici, sed schismatic!. 

XVII. Thesauri Ecclesiie, unde Papa dat indulgentias, non sunt merita 
Christ! et sanctorum. 

XVIII. Indulgentine sunt pire fraudes fidelium, et remissiones bonorum 
onerum, et sunt de numero eorum, qua? licent, et non de numero eorum, qua} 

XIX. IndulgentJoe his, qui veraciter eas consequuntur, non valent ad 
remissionem pu>mu pro peccatis actualibus debitse ad divinam justitiani. 

XX. Seducuntur credentes indulgentias esse salutares, et ad fructum spir- 
itus utilcs. 

XXI. Indulgentine necessarian sunt solum publicis criminibus, et proprie 
conceduntur duris solummodo et impatientibus. 

XXII. Sex generibus hominum indulgence nee sunt necessaria?, nee 
utiles; videlicet mortuis seu moritiiris, infirmis, legitime impeditis, his qui 
non commiserunt crimina, his qui crirnina commiserunt, sed non publica, his 
qui meliora operantur. 

XXIII. Excommunicationes sunt tantum external pociuc, ncc privant 
hominem communibus spiritualibus Ecclesia, 1 oral ion ibus. 

XXIV. Docendi sunt Christian! plus diligere excommunicationem quam 

XXV. Itomanus Pontifex, Petri successor, non est Christi vicarius super 
omnes mundi ccclesias ab ipso Christo in bcato Petro institutus. 

XXVI. Verbum Christi ad Petrum: "Quodcumque solveris super ter 
rain/ etc., extenditur duntaxat ad ligata ab ipso Petro. 

1 Cocquolinefl : ft abxolutum rerp P*SP. Raynaldus is Hcht here, according to the original. 
* Coccnu liiien : sr-if. 3 Itayualdus omits ad. * itayu. omits concilio. 

6 Rayn. u!nit.i vj/ecie. 


XXVII. ( Vrtum est in maim Ecclesiae aut Papas prorsus non csse statuere 
artieulos tidei, iiniiio nee leges inuruin, sen bonorum openun. 

XXVIII. Si Papa euni inagna parte Eccleshe sic vel sic sentiret, nee etiam 
erraret, adbue non est peceatuin aut hie res is eontrariuin sen tire, pnesertim 
in re non neecssaria al salutein, ilonec fuerit per Concilium universule alter- 
um reprobatum, alterum api)robatuni. 

XXIX. Via nohis facta est enarrandi auctoritatem Coneiliorum, et libere 
contradicendi eornin gestis, et judicandi eoruin decreta, et confidenter conli- 
tendi quidquid veruni videtur, sive prubatuin fuerit, sive reprobatum a quo- 
cunque concilio. 

XXX. Aliqui artieuli Joannis IIusz condemnati in eonoilio Constantiensi 
sunt Christianissimi, verissimi et evangelic!, quos non universalis Ecclesia 
posset damnare. 

XXXI. In onmi opere bono Justus peccat. 

XXXII. Opus bonuin optime facttnn veniale est peceatum. 

XX XI II. Iljeretieos eoniburi est contra voluntatcm Spirit us. 1 

XXXIV. Prieliari adversus Turcas est repitgnare Deo visitanti iniquitates 
nostras per illos. 

XXX\". Nemo est certus se non semper peccare mortaliter propter oc- 
cultissimum supcrb;e vitiiun. 

XXXVI. Liberum arbitrium post peceatum est res de solo titulo, et dum 
facit quod in se <-st, p^c;it mortaliter. 

XXXVII. Purgatorium non potest probari ex sacra scriptura, qu;e sit in 

XXX\ III. Animie in purgatorio non sunt seeurte deearum salute, saltern 
onmes; nee probatum est ullis aut rationibus aut seripturis, ipsas extra 
Statum merendi, aut-airendaj earitatis. 

XXXIX. Aniline in purtjatorio peccant sine intermissione, quamdiu quie- 
runt re(|iiiem. et borrcnt jxriias. 

XL. Anima 1 ex purgatorio liberatSB sufTragiis viventium minus beantur, 
qiiam si per se satisfecissent. 

XI, I. PnHati ecclesiastic! et principes seculares non malefacerent si 
omnes saccos mendicitatis 3 delerent. 

[TlnM<> propositions are comK-miu-d an heretical, Hcandalnun, offennivc, and contrary to 
Catholic truth.] 

Qui quidem errores respective quam sint pestiferi, quam perniciosi, quam 
scandalosi, quam piarum et sim]>licium mentium seductivi, <|uam deni<iuit 
sint contra omnem cbaritatem, ac sanctiu Homaiuv Ecelesiiu matris oinvium 
fitlelium et niagistriu fidei reverentiam atcjue nervum ecclesiastic discipline, 
obedientiam scilicet, qua; foiis est et origo omnium virtutum, sine qua facile 

1 Thl U an Indirect approval of the burning of heretic*. Rome never han disowned thin 

1 (Wquc-llnon rcad nfr nfr for nut. Uaynaldun in right here. 
Baynmldiu: medu-it>itis (a typugruphlctil error). 


unusquisquo infidelis esse convincitur, nemo same mentis ignorat. Nos igi- 
tur in praemissis, utpote gravissimis, propensius (ut decet) procedere, neenon 
hujusnioili pesti morboque canceroso, ne in agro Dominico tanquam vepris 
nociva ulterius serpat, viam prsecludere cupientcs, habita super praadictis 
erroribus, et eorum singulis diligenti trutinatione, discussione, ac districto 
examine, maturaque deliberatione, omnibusque rite pensatis ac soepius ven- 
tilatis cum venerabilibus fratribus nostris sanctas Romanae Ecclesia3 Cardina- 
libus, ac regularium ordiniuu Prioribus, sen ministris generalibus, plurisbus- 
que aliis sacra? theologiaB, necnon utriusqiie juris professoribus sive magistris, 
et quidem peritissirnis, reperinuis eosdem errores respective (ut praefertur) aut 
articulos non esse catholicos, nee tanquam tales esse dogmatizandos, sed con 
tra EcclesiaB Catholicaa doctrinam sive traditionem, atqtie ab ea veram divi- 
narum scripturarum receptam interpretationem, cujus auctoritati ita acquies- 
cendum censuU Augustinus, ut dixerit, se Evangel io non fuisse crediturum, 
nisi Ecclesite Catholicoo intervenisset auctoritas. Xam ex eisdem erroribus, 
vel eorum aliquo, vel aliquibus, palam sequitur, eandem Ecclesiam, quaj Spi- 
ritu sancto regitur, errare, ct semper errasse. Quod est utique contra illud, 
quod Cbristus discipulis suis in ascensione sua (ut in sancto Evangelic Mat- 
thaei legitur) promisit dicens: "Ego vobiscum sum usque ad consummation- 
em seculi;" necnon contra sanctorum Patrum detenninationes, Concilioruna 
quoque et summoruin Pontificum expressas ordinationes seu canones, quibus 
non obtemperasso omnium haeresum et schismatum, teste Cypriano, fomes 
et causa semper fuit. 

I)e eorundem itaque venerabilium fratrum nostrorum consilio et assensu, 
ac omnium ct singulorum prajdictorum matura deliberatione prsedicta, auc- 
toritate omnipotentis Dei, et beatorum Apostolorum Petri et Pauli, et nostra, 
priBfatos omnes et singulos articulos seu errores, tanquam (ut prsBinittitur) 
respective luereticos, aut scandalosos, aut falsos, aut pi arum aurium offen- 
sivos, vel simplicium mentium seductivos, et veritati Catholicas obviantes, 
damnamus, reprol)amus, ac omnino rejicimus, ac pro damnatis, reprobatis, 
et rejectis ab omnibus utriusciue sexus Christ! fidelibus haberi debere, harum 
serie decernimus et declaramus. 1 

[Prohibition of the defence and publication of these errors.] 

Inhibentes in virtute sancta? obodientiae ac sub majoris excommunica- 
tionis latse sententise, necnon quoad Ecclesiasticas et Regulares personas, 
Episcopalium omnium, etiam Patriarclialium, Metropolitanarum et aliarura 
Catliedralium Ecclesiarum, Monasteriorum quoque et Prioratuum etiam Con- 
ventualium et quarumcunque 2 dignitatum aut Beneficiorum Ecclesiastico- 
rum, Sascularium aut quorum vis Ordinum Regularium, privationis et inha- 
bilitatis ad ilia, et alia in posterum obtinenda. Quo vero ad Conventus, 

1 RaynalihiR (fol. 305) omits all the specifications of punishments from here down to the 
next section beginning Inxuper. 

2 The original rcada yiwrumcnq. (an o for an n). 


Capitula sou demos, aut pia loca sa>cularium, vel rocnilarium, etiam Mendi- 
cantiiun. neenon Universitatis etiam studioruin generalium, qiiorumeunquc 
privilegiorum indultorum a Sede Apostolica, vel ejus Legatis, aut alias quo- 
modolibet habltorum, vel obtentorum, cujuscumque tenons existant: noo- 
non nominis et potestatis stadium generale tenendi, legendi, ac interpretandi 
quasvis scientias et facilitates et inhabilitatis ad ilia et alia in posterum ob- 
tinonda: Prrcdieationis quoque otticii ac amissionis stuilii generalis ot omni 
um privilouiorum ejusdem. Quo vero ad s:i?culares ejusdem excommuniea- 
tionis. necnon amissionis cujuscumque emphyteosis, sou quorumcunque 
feudorum, tarn a Komana Ecclosia, quam alias quomodolibet obtentorum, ac 
etiani inhabilitatis ad ilia ct alia in posterum obtinonda. Nocnon quo ad 
omn s et. sincjulos suprrius nominates, inhibitionis Ecclesiasticas sepulturaa 
inhabilitatisquo ad omnes ct singulos act us k ^itimos, infamia) ac diilidatio- 
nis ot rrimini* hpsse majcstatis, et ha?roticoruni ct fautorum eorundcm in 
jure exprcssis pfiiis, eo ipso ct absque ultcriori dcclaratione per omnes et 
singulos supradictos, si (quod absit) contrafeccrint, incurrendis. A quibus 
vigore cujuscumque facultatis et clausulanim etiam in confessionalibus <|iii- 
busvis personis sub (juibusvis verborum formis contcntarum, nisi a Homano 
Pontifice vd alio ab co ad id in specie facultatcm babente, pnuteniuam in 
mortis articulo constituti, absolvi neqiK ant. Omnibus et singulis utrius(jue 
scxus fbristifidelibus. tain Laicis quam Clericis, Srecularibus et quorumvis 
Ordinum Hcgiilaribus, et aliis quibuscumque JMTSOIUS cujuscumque status, 
gnlu><. vt-1 conditionis existant, et (piarum(]iu> ccclcsiastica vel inundana 
pm-ful^eant ilii:nitate. t-tiam S. R. K. ( ardinalil)iis, I atrian-bis, rrimatibu.s, 
Archiepiscopis, Episccpis, Patriarcbalium, Mctropolitanarum et aliarum 
Cthedralium, Collegiataruin ac inferiorum ccclcsiarum Pnelatis, Clcricis 
ftliisquc jit-rsonis Ecclesiasticis, Soecularibus et quorumvis Ordinum etiam 
llendicantium regularibus, Abbatilms, Prioribus vel Ministris generalilms 
vel particularibus, Fratribus, sen Ileli.^iosis, excmptis et mm exemptis: 
Btudiorum <|uoqiic Universitatibus Siccularibus et quorumvis Ordinum etiam 
Mendicant ium regularibus, necnon Ke^ibus, Impcratori, Electoribus, Prin- 
cipil)!!-*, Dueibus, Marcbionibus, Comitibus. Haronibtis, CajiitaiK-is, ( <>n- 
diK toribus, Domiccllis, omnibusque Olfieialibus, Judicibus, Notariis Ecde- 
8ia<tiris et S.-ectilaribiis, ( ominunitatibus, Universitatibus, Potentatibus, 
Clvitatibus, Ca.stris, Terris et loci 1 *, sen eorum vel eanim eivilms. babitatori- 
bus el incolis, ac quibusvis aliis personis Eedesiasticis, vel Kegularilms (ut 
pnefertur) jx-r universum orbem, ubieumque, pr;e^ertim in Alcmania exis- 
t<jntibus, vel jiro tempo re futuri^, ne prajfati^ <-rnires. aut eorum ali<juos, 
perversamque dortrinam bujusmodi as^ep-re, afflrmare, defendero, pni dicare, 
lit illi quomodolibet, publice vel occulte, qiiovis cjiuesito ingciiio vel colore, 
Ucite vel expresse favere pripsumant. 

[Thi- writlriKu of Luther nre furhiddrn, and ordered to l>e htirnt.) 

Insuper quia errores j)r:pfati. et jilures alii continentur in libellis sou 
scriptis Martini Lutber, dictos libellos, et omnia dioti Martini scripta, seu 


praedicationes in Latino, vel quocumquc alio idiomate reperiantnr, in quibus 
dieti errores, sen corum aliquis continentur, siiniliter damnarnus, reproba- 
inus, atque oninino rejicimus, ot pro danmatis, reprobatis, ac rejectis (ut 
prsBfertur) haberi volumus, mandantes in virtute sanctae obedientiae, et sub 
poenis praedictis eo ipso incurrendis, omnibus et singulis utriusque sexus 
Christifidelibus supcrius nominatis, ne hujusmodi scripta, libellos, pranlica- 
tiones, sen schedulas, vcl in eis contenta capitula, errores, auL articulos 
supradictos continentia legerc, assercre, pnedicare, laudare, imprimere, pub- 
licare, sive defendere per so vel alium, sen alios directe vel indirecte, tacite 
vel expresse, publice vel occulte, aut in domibus suis sive aliis publicis vel 
privatis locis teuere quoquo raodo pnesuinant; quiniinmo ilia statim post 
haruni publicationera ubicumque fuerint, per ordinaries et alios supradictos 
diligenter qiuesita, publice et solemniter in praesentia cleri et populi sub 
omnibus et singulis supradictis pcenis comburaut. 

[Martin Lmhcr was often warned with paternal charity to desist from these errors, and cited 
to Home with the promise of safe-conduct. J 

Quod vero ad ipsuni Mnrtinum attinot, (bone Deus) quid prrctermisimus, 
quid non fecimus, quid patenue cbaritatis omisimus, ut ouin ab bujusmodi 
erroribus revocarenms ? Postquam cnim ipsuni citavimus, mitius cum eo 
procedere volentes, ilium invitavimus, atque tain per diversos tractatus cum 
legato nostro habito.s, (juam per literas nostras bortati fuimus, ut a prrcdictis 
erroribus discederet, aut oblato etiam salvo conductu et pecunia ad iterneces- 
saria, sine metu sou timore aliquo quern perfecta cliaritas foras mitt^re de- 
buit, veniret, ac Salvatoris nostri Apostolique Pauli exem])lo, non occulto, 
sed palam et in facie loqueretur. Quod si fecisset, pro eerto (ut arbitramur) 
ad cor revcrsus errores suos eognovisset, nee in Romana curia, quam tanto- 
pere vanis malevolorum rumoribus plusquam oportuit tribuendo vituperat, 
tot reperisset errata; docuissenmsque eum luce clarius, sanctos Romanos 
Pontifices, quos prajter omnem modcstiam injuriose lacerat, in suis canoni- 
bus, sen constitutionibus, quas mordere nititur, nunquam errasse; (juia juxta 
propbetam, nee in Galahad resina, nee medicus dcest. Sed obaudivit sem- 
})er, et prredicta citatione omnibus et singulis supradictis spretis venire con- 
tempsit, ac usque in praDsentem diem contumax, atque animo indurato cen- 
suras ultra annum sustinuit: et quod detenus est, addens mala malis, de 
citatione bujusmodi notitiam habens, in vocem temerariaa appellationis pro- 
rupit ad futurum concilium contra constitutionem Pii Secundi ac Julii Sec- 
undi, proedecessorum nostrorum, qua cavetur. taliter appellantes haM-eticorura 
pu iia plectendos (frustra etiam Consilii auxilium imploravit, (jui illi s; non 
credere palam profitetur); ita ut contra ipsum tanquam de fide notorie sus- 
peetum, immo vere biereticum absque ulterori citatione vel mora ad coii- 
dcmnalionem et danmationem ejus taiKjuam haeretici, ac ad omnium et 
singularum suprascriptarum pojuarum et ceusurarum severitatem procedere 


[Luther i< avrain exhorted to re-pent, and promised the reception of the prodigal non.] 

\ihilotninus de eoruiulein fratnun nostrormn ounsilio, omnipotentis Dei 
imitantes dcmentiam, qui lion vult mortem peccatoris, sed nia^is tit conver- 
tatur t-t vivat, oiiniiuin injuriaruin hactenus nohis et Apostolica3 scdi illata- 
rum olliti, oinni (|iia possumus pit-tat*- uti decrevimus, et quantum in nobis 
est, at;erc, ut proposila mansuetudinis via ail cor revertatur. ft a pra-dictis 
recedat errorihus, ut ipsuin taii(|uaiu (ilium ilium prodiuum ad givmium 
Ecclcshc revcrtentem bcnimic recipiamus. Ipsum iijitur Martinum ct IJIKK- 
ciiiD iui ci adluurciitcs, cjusque roccptatorcs ct fautotvs per vise-era mi>cri- 
conli;r Dei uostri. ct JHT aspc rsiom- m san.miinis Domini nostri .Jcsti Chris:!. 
quo et per (]IKMU huniaui generis redcinptio, et sancta- matris Ecclesiic :cili- 
ficatio facta est, ex t<>tt- conic hortamur et ohsecramus, ut ipsius Eccle^he 
pacem. unitatem ct vcritatem, pro qua ij)>e Salvator tarn instantcr oravit ad 
I atn-m, tuihare dcsistant, ct a pnedictis tarn pcrniciosis errorihus jtror^us 
ahstiiif.uit, inventuri aptid Uf)s si c(Tcctualiter paruerint, ct paruisse per h-i, i- 
tiiua doeumenta nos eertilicavcrint, pateriuc charitatis affect uni, ct apcrtuin 
inansuetudinis ct cleiueiitiic foiitem. 

[Luther i-i t.ii-prtnlf<l from the futirtiinin of the ministry, and given sixty day.*, afu-r the 
{)Ul)liculi<>ii of tile hull, to recant, j 

Inhibontes nihilominus cidi-m Martino ox nunc, ut interim al> omni 
prsi-lieatione sen pnedicationis ollicio omnino desistat. Alioijuin in ipMim 
Martinum si forte justitia> ct virtutis amor a peccato noil rctrahat, iudul- 
gpntiiL cjuo spos ad pn-niteiitiain non rcducat, po-narum terror cocrceat dis- 
ciplinn;: eundem M.irtinum cjuiue adluurcuti S complices, fautoro, -t 
roccptatorcs tcnore pnescntium rc |iiirimus, ct nionemus in virtutc sanctiu 
obe<lientiuc, <-t sub pncdictis oinuilms <-t siui^ulis p<i-nis co ipso incurreiitlis 
district e ]r;fcipicndo mandamus, ijuatcnus infra scxa^inta dies, quonnii 
vi^inti pro primo, vi^inti pro set-undo, ct rcliquos viginti dies pro tcrtio -t 
pcrcmptorio termino assi.^namus al> atlixionc pra^entium in lix-is infra- 
script is immediate scqueutes numcrantlos, ipsc Martinus, complices, fauiop-s, 
adhicp-ntes, ct ivecptatores ])r;e licti a pra fatis errorihus, corumqiic jira 1 - 
dicationc, a - publication^, ct assertion.-, dcfciisionc qiioquc ct librorum s.-u 
cripturaruin editions su])cr cisil<-m. sivs coriim aliqiio omnino dcsistant, 
librosqiic as script uras oiiuies ct sin-^ulas ]>r:cfatos crron-s sen eorum aliqiios 
quoinodolihet continentcs comlmrant, vcl comluiri faciant. Ips.- etiam Mar 
tinus errorcs ct assertiones hujusmodi omniut> rcvocet, ac tic revocations 
hu jus modj per pul^lica documcnta in forma juris valida in manihus duonim 
Pnelatontm con^i^nata a 1 nos infra alios similes scxaginla tlics traiismit- 
tcnda. vcl per ipsummct (si ad nos venire volusrit, t|U<il magis placerct) cum 
pnt fato plcniseimo salvo conduct u, quein ex nunc conccdiiuus dcfcrenda, 
nos ccrtiores cfliciat, ut dc. cjus vcra ohcdiciitia nullus iluhitatiuiiis scrupulus 
valcat icmaiierc. 


[In case Luther and his followers refuse to recant within sixty days, they will be excom 
municated, and dealt with according to law.] 

Alias si (quod absit) Martinus prrefatus, complices, fautores, adha?rentes 
et receptatores predict! secus cgcrint, seu pm-missa oinnia et singula infra 
terminum prsedictum cum effect u non adimpleverint, Apostoli imitautes 
doctrinam, qui hiBreticum hominem post priinam et secimdam correctionem 
vitandum docuit, ex mine prout ex tune, et e converse eundem Martinum, 
complices, adha?rentes. fautores et receptatores praefatos et eorura qucmlibet 
tanquam aridos palmites in Christo non manentes, sed doctrinam contra- 
riam, Catholics fidei inimicam, sive scandalosam seu daumatam, in non 
modicam offensam divinse majestatis, ac universalis Ecclesiie, et fidei Catho 
lics detrimentum et scandalum dogmatizantes, claves quoque Ecclesire vili- 
pendentes, notorios et pertinaces hiereticos eadem auctoritate fuisse et esse 
declarantes, eosdem ut tales harum serie condemnamus, et eos pro talibus 
haberi ab omnibus utriusque sexus Christi fidelibus supradictis volumus et 
mandamus. Eosque omnes et singulos omnibus supradictis et aliis contra 
tales a jure inflictis paenis prresentium tenore subjicimus, et eisdem irretitos 
fuisse et esse decernimus et declaramus. 

[All Catholics are admonished not to read, print, or publish any book of Luther and his 
followers, but to burn them.] 

Inliibemus pneterea sub omnibus et singulis pnemissis pa nis eo ipso 
incurrendis, omnibus et singulis Christi fidelibus superius nominatis, ne 
scripta, etiam prsefatos errores non continent ia, ab eodein Martino quomodo- 
libet condita vel edita, aut condenda vel edenda, seu eorum aliqua tan 
quam ab homine ortbodoxce fidei inimico, atque ideo vehementer suspecta, 
et-ut ejus memoria omnino deleatur de Christifidelium consortio, legere, 
asserere, pnedieare, laudare, imprimere, publicare, sive defendere, per se vel 
alium sou alios, directe vel indirecte, tacite vel expresse, publice vel occulte, 
seu in domibus suis, sive aliis locis publicis vel privatis tenere quoquoinodo 
pnesumant, quinimmo ilia comburant, ut prrefertur. 1 

[Christians are forbidden, after the excommunication, to hold any intercourse with Luther 
and hi* followers, or to give them shelter, on pain of the interdict; and magistrates are 
commanded to arremt and nend them to Rome.] 

Monemus insuper omnes et singulos Christifideles supradictos, sub eadem 
excommunicationis latie sententine poena, ut ka?reticos proedictos declaratos 
et condemnatos, mandatis nostris non obtemperantes, post lapsum termini 
supradicti evitent et quantum in eis est, evitari faciant, nee cum eisdem, vel 
eorum aliquo commercium aut aliquam conversationem seu coinmunionem 
hal>eant, nee eis necessaria ministrent. 

Ad majorem pra terea dicti Martini suonimque complicum, fautorum et 
adluerentium ac receptatorum pra3dictorum, sic post lapsum termini predict! 
declaratorum hwreticorum et condemnatorum confusionem universis et sin- 

1 The remainder of the bull is briefly summarized by Raynaldus. 


Drills utriusqno sexus Christifidelibus Patriarcbis, Arcbiepiscopis, Episeopis, 
Patriardialium, Metropolitanarum, et aliarum eatlu-dralium, collei^iatarum 
ac inferiorum ecclesiarum Pnt lalis, Capitulis, aliis<{iu> personis ecclesiasticis, 
sivcularibus et quoramvis Ordinum etiam Memlicantium (pnesertim ejus eon- 
prcirationis cujus dictus Martinus est professus, et in qua de;ere vel morari 
dicitur) rcgularibus exemptis et non exemptis, nt cnon universis et sini;ulis 
prindpibus, (juacuinqiie ecdesiastiea vel mundana fulnentibus digitate Keiri- 
bus, Imperatoris 1 Electoribus, Ducibus, Marchionibus, ( \nnitibus, Uaroni- 
bus, Capitaneis, Couductoribus, Domicellis, Communitatibus, I niversi- 
tatilnis, 1 otentatibus, ( ivitatil)us, Terris, C astris et locis, sen eorum 
habitatoril)us, civibus et incolis oumibusque aliis et sin^ulis supradietis i>er 
universuiu Orbein, pnesertim in eadein Aleinania constitutis mandamus, <iua- 
tenus sul> prajdictis omnibus et singulis pu>nis, ipsi vel coruin quilibet, pne- 
fatuiu Martinum, complices, adbterentes, receptantes et fautores personaliter et eaptos ad nostram instant lain n-tineant et ad nos mittant: repor- 
taturi i>ro tarn bono opere- a nobis et Sede Apostoliea remunerationem, pnu- 
niimnque eondiunum vel saltern eos et eorum <iuendil)et, de Metropolitanis, 
Cathctlralibus, Colleiriatis, et aliis ecclesiis, domibus, Monasteriis, Comrnti- 
bus, ( ivitatil)iis, Dominiis, Universitatibtis, Communitatibus, C astris, Terris, 
ac locis respective, tain clerici et regulares qua in laid ouines et singuli supra- 
diet i omnino expellant. 

[The place* which harbor Luther and hi followers arv threatened with the Interdict.) 

C ivitates vt-ro, Dominia, Terras, Ciistra, Villas, comitatus, fortilieia, 
Oppida et loca qu;eeum>|iie ubilil)ft eonsistentia earum et eorum respective 
Metropolitanas, Cathedrales, C olle^iatas et alias ecelesias, Monasteria, 1 iior- 
atus, Domus, Convnitus et loca reli^iosa vel pia cujuseunque ordinis (ut 
pr.efcrtur) ad qua; jini-fatum Martinum vel aliqucin ex pnedictis dedinare 
continent, quamdiu ibi permanserint et tridtio post recessum, ecdesiastico 
ubjicimus interdicts). 

[Proviolon for the promulgation and execution of the bull.] 

Et ut pnemissa omnibus innoteseant, mandamus insuper universis Patri- 
ardiis, Arcbiepiscopis, Episeopis, Patriarcbalium, Metropolitanarum ct alia- 
ruro cathedraliuro ac collngiataruin eedrsiarum Pndatis, Capitulis aliisipic 
p<-rsonis eedrsiastids, siecularilms <-t qiiorumvis Ordinum supradictorum re- 
gularibus, fratribus relii;iosis, monaehis exemptis et non exeinplis supradi< > tis, 
ubililx t, pnesertim in Aleinania constitutis <{uatenus ipsi vel eorum quilibet 
sub similibus censuris et pcrnis eo ipso incurn-ndis, Martinum omnesque -t 
siM. iil"- sujiradictos qui rlapso ti-nnino bujusmodi mandatis seu monilis nos- 
tris non paruerint, in eorum ecdesiis, dominieis <-t aliis festivis dielius, dum 
inibi major jMipuli multitudo ad divina convenerit, declaratos ba-retieos -t 
condi-mnatos publir. nuncient fadantque < t mandent ab aliis nunciari et ab 

1 rocqui-llne* : finjifrntnr!. Then there should be a cuiuiuu after Imptratori. The HI-VCH 
Eleclorn of the Kuipcrur arc iui;uiil. 


omnibus cvitari. Xecnon omnibus Christifid*elibus ut oos evitent, pari modo 
sub prsedictis censuris et pu iiis. Et pnesentes literas vel caruin trausump- 
tum sub forma iufrascripta factum in eorum ecelesiis, monasteriis, domibus, 
conventibus et aliis locis legi, publicari atque aih gi faciant. Excommunica- 
inus quoque et anathematizamus omnes et singulos cujtiscumque status, gra- 
dus, conditionis, prtu-eniinentiai, dignitatis aut excellentise fuerint qui quo 
minus pnesentes litera) vel earum transumpta, copiie sen exemplaria in suis 
terris et dominiis legi, aingi et publicare possint, fecerint vel quoquoinodo 
procuraverint per se vel alium seu alios, publice vel oeculte, directe vel in- 
direete, tacite vel expresse. 

Postremo quia difficile foret proesentes literas ad singula quaeque loca de- 
ferri in quibus necessarium foret, volumus et apostolica autlioritate decer- 
nimus, quod earum transumptis manu public! notarii confectis et subscriptis, 
vel in alma Urbe impressis et sigillo alicujus eeelesiastiei Prielati munitis 
ubique stetur et plena fides adhibeatur, prout originalibus literis staretur, si 
forent exhibits vel ostensie. 

Et ne pnefatus Martinus omnesque alii supradicti, quos prrcsentes litera? 
quomodolibet eoncernunl, ignorantiam earundem literarum et in eis conten- 
torum omnium et singulorum prsetendere valeant, literas ipsas in Ba.-iilicse 
Priueipis Apostolorum et Cancellame Apostolica}, necnon Catliednilium 
ecclesiarum Brandeburgen., Misnen. et Morspergen. [Merseburg] valvis afligi 
et publicari debere l volumus, decernentes, quod earundem literarum publi- 
catio sic facta, supradictum Martinum omnesque alios et singulos prsonomi- 
natos, quos li terse quomodolibet concernunt, perinde ardent, ac si 
litene ipste die affixionis et publicationi.s hujusinodi eis personaliter leche et 
intimataj forent, cum nou sit verisimile, quod ea qua) tarn patenter limit de- 
beaut apud eos incognita remanere. 

Xon obstantibus constitutionibus et ordinationibus apostolicis, seu si supra- 
dictis omnibus et singulis vel eorum alicui aut (juibusvis aliis a Sede Apos 
tolica i)rtodicta, vel ab ea potestatem habentibus sub quavis forma, ctiam 
confessional] et cum quibusvis etiam fortissimis clausulis. aut ex quavis 
causa, seu grandi consideratione, indultum vel concessum existat, quod in- 
terdiei, suspend!, vel excommunicari non possint per literas Apostolicas, non 
facientes plenani et expressam ac de verbo ad verbuin, non autem jier clau- 
sulas generales id importantes, de indulto hujusinodi mentionem, ejusdem 
indulti tenores, causas-et formas perinde ac si de verbo ad verbum insere- 
rentur, ita ut omnino tollatur, pnesentibus pro expressis habentes. 

Null! ergo omnino bominum liceat bane paginam nostne damnationis, 
reprobationis, rejectionis, decreti, declarationis, inbibitionis, voluntatis, man- 
dati, bortationis, obsecrationis, reqtiisitionis, monitionis, assignationis, con- 
cessionis, condemnationis, subjectionis, excommunicationis, et anatliema- 
tizationis infringere, vel ei ausu temerario contraire. bi quis autem hoc 

1 Cocquclincs omits debere. * Cocquelinea : clausiilas. A plausible correction. 


attentare praesumpserit, indignationem Omnipotentis Dei ac Beatorum Petri 
ct Pauli Apostolorum ejus se noverit ineur>uruin. Kom:e apud S. IVtruni anno incarnationis Dominica Milesimo Quin- 
genti simo Vigesimo. XVII. Kls. Julii. Pontilicatiis Nostri Anno Octavo. 

Visa. K. Milanesius. 


Impressum Kom;e per laeolmm Ma/.ochium 
DC Maiulato S. I). N. Papa;. 1 

48. Luther burns the l\>j>Sx Bull. <in<l forever breaks icith 
Rome. Dee. 10, 13 JO. 

Literature in 47. 

Luther was prepared for the bull of excommunication. 
He could see in it nothing but blasphemous presumption and 
pious hypocrisy. At first he pretended to treat it us a forgery 
of Kck.- Then he wrote a Latin and (lerman tract, "Against 
the Hull of Antichrist," called it a. "cursed, impudent, devil 
ish bull," took up the several charges of heresy, and turned 
the tables against the Pope, who was the heretic according to 
the standard of the sacred Scriptures, llutten ridiculed the 
bull from the literary and patriotic standpoint with sarcastic 
notes and queries. Luther attacked its contents with red-hot 
anger ami indignation bordering on frenzy. I le thought the 
last day, the dav of Antichrist, had come. lie went so far as 
to say that nobody could be .saved who adhered to the bull/ 5 

In deference to his friends, he renewed the useless appeal 
from the Pope to a free general council (Nov. 17, lf>liO), 

1 Subscriptions arc omitted ly ( oerpielines and Kaynaldus. 

J " /// /;/ ,iin-l, n<i j,;i, Dr. Ki-k luifn- >in< Ilnllr mil */>/, ,;>n ]!"in //./* r 

mirt, <i,-i,r,i,-i,t. <i;, Unit .so <Uutl!i-li .s/ /, </ /.s.s .s/c wolil iiiof/it, me-/, />/. y-;,-/r 

heiHHi n, .\n mil Lw/cn intd Irrtltniit .s/r ,s< in .so// ; inul , r <i> >>< for, <l< n L< nit n 
dun Muni ZH ni-l, m iri-rii, xle si, Id n <jl>ni1>< n, tn x,i /r.s / o/^.s/.s M"ir/r. .so n 
l tll LujrtlUJiicl int. l<~h /i/ r.s i/i srfn-lirn, max* ill ,s >y</r/.s in (intlis \<liinll 

Wnrttn; tnr in in*, wax i/i>ttli<-l,i r Hulk l>< .s7,/o.s.s( n hat" 1 von din nt iun 
Xckinrlim Ilnllin nn<! Lii /i n. 

3 H- wrote to Spalatin, Nov. -1 (in De \Vette, I. ."! _ ): /////;o.s.s//,// ( f.s7 
tfllrnxjii,-!, >jni Intir llnlhi ant fur, runt, mil unit r<i>n</n<tr< ntnt." He told 
the students, Dec. 11: " .V/.x/ tut,, r,- l<- Hwntintia u rcynu pajmli, nun 
potnttis amn ijtti ti straruni uniinaruiu milut< //." 


which he had made two years before (Nov. 28, 1518) ; and in 
liis appeal he denounced the Pope as a hardened heretic, an 
anticliristian suppressor of the Scriptures, a blasphemer and 
despiser of the holy Church and of a rightful council. 1 

At the same time he resolved upon a symbolic act which 
cut off the possibility of a retreat. The Pope had ordered his 
books, good and bad, without any distinction, to be burned ; 
and they were actually burned in several places, at Cologne 
even in the presence of the Emperor. They were to be 
burned also at Leipzig. Luther wanted to show that he too 
could burn books, which was an old custom (Acts ID : 19) 
and easy business. He returned fire for fire, curse for curse. 
He made no distinction between truth and error in the papal 
books, since the Pope had ordered his innocent books to be 
destroyed as well. He gave public notice of his intention. 

On the tenth day of December, 1520, at nine o clock in 
the morning, in the presence of a large number of professors 
and students, he solemnly committed the bull of excommu 
nication, together with the papal decretals, the canon law, 
and several writings of Eck and Emser, to the flames, with 
these words (borrowed from Joshua s judgment of Achan 
the thief, Josh. 7 : 25) : " As thou [the Pope] hast vexed the 
Holy One of the Lord, may the eternal fire vex thee ! " 2 

The spot where this happened is still shown outside the 
Elster Gate at Wittenberg, under a sturdy oak surrounded by 
an iron railing. 3 

1 Walch, XV. 1000 sqq. Erl. ed., XXIV. 28-35; and Op. Lat., V. 119- 
131. The appeal was published in Latin and German. 

2 The " Holy One" refers to Christ, as in Mark 1 :24; Arts 2:27; not to 
Luther, as ignorance and malignity have misinterpreted the word. Luther 
spoke in Latin: " (Jnia In contnrbasti Sanrfmn Domini, i<lc<xji(f tc contur- 
Ix t i jnix (t tcn)HK." The Vulgate translates -Josh. 7:25: (Jnifi tttrhaxti 
7iox, c.flnrht-t t(> J )f>miniix in die IHIC." In the Revised E. V., the whole 
passage reads: " Why hast thou troubled us ? The Lord shall trouble thee 
this day. And all Israel stoned him with stones, and burnt them [in 
Hebrew DP^] with fire after they had stoned them with stones." 

8 A tablet contains the inscription: "Dr. Martin Luther vcrbrannte an 
dicscr Stiittv am 10 Dtc. 1520 die p&pstliche Banribulle. 1 


Several hundred students tarried at the fire, which had 
been kindled by a master of the university, some chanting 
the Tn Dcurn^ others singing funeral dirges on the papal 
laws; then they made a mock procession through the town, 
collected piles of scholastic and Romish books, and return 
ing to the place of execution, threw them into the Humes. 

Luther, with Melanchthon, Carlstadt, and the other doctors 
and masters, returned home immediately after the act. He at 
first had trembled at the step, and prayed for light : but after 
the deed was done, he felt more cheerful than ever. He re 
garded his excommunication as an emancipation from all 
restraints of popery and monnsticism. On the same day he 
calmly informed Spalatin of the event as a piece of news. 1 
On the next day he warned the students in the lecture-room 
against the Romish Antichrist, and told them that it was high 
time to burn the papal chair with all its teachers and abomin 
ations. 2 He publicly announced his act in a Latin and (ier- 
nian treatise, " Why the Hooks of the Pope and his Disciples 
were burned by Dr. Martin Luther." He justified it by his 
duties as a baptized Christian, as a sworn doctor of divinity, 
as a daily preacher, to root out all unchristian doctrines. 
He cites from the papal law-books thirty articles and errors 
in glorification of the papacy, which deserve to he burned; 
and calls the whole canon-law "the abomination of desola 
tion" (Matt. -4: 1.")) and antichristian ( 2 Tliess. I: 4), 
since the sum of its teaching was, that k * the Pope is (Jod on 

1 * A mm 3//>A"A", ilrclmn Di-rriiilirix, ftord nona, { .ntxti tonit }\ l((f m- 
bcr jd d l oriental in portdnt, jnjrtu S. Cruci-in, tnmn-n // // I n/Ki : I)<rrc- 
tuntj Decretalf*) St-st. ( (I nu-nt. Kslrnraijiint., cl linlln ni>r!x.\lmii Linnix A . : 
Item Hitinnni Anyi-lirn [;i work on casuistry l>y An^rlus f arletu.s de Clavasio, 
or rhiavasso. d. 141.~>], (Jliryxin-nxu [!)< ]>r<i lcxtin<iti<u <-t ntnrin ,\c.r, 1514] 
Eccii, if tiliit f jnx<lrin nntnrix, Kinxrri, fl (jiuiditni alid, <jtur diljrrtd JXT dliun 
SHiit : tit riih diit tncendinrii I djiixtn-, unn CH.II- ni indrn>it ririnin tibrnft cj- 
uriTi 1 , IIHOX cnnfuttirc n<n\ pn*nnnt. II<ir rnmt )tnrn. " DC Wctto, I. ")." > J. 
Further details about the burniiif; and tho conduct of the students \v learn 
from the r j>ort of an uniiatiuMl pupil of Luther: Ksmxtiimis imtit:hr uitid,nu- 
ritm ilrwtnliinn Artti, in th<- Krl. !. of <>j>. Lnl., \. 2. >O-JOC,. 

a iCaiike, i. 307; Kostlin, i. 4UT; Kuldc, i. IftK). 


earth, above all things, heavenly and earthly, spiritual and 
temporal, all things belong to the Pope, and no one dare 
ask, What doest thou? Simultaneously with this tract, he 
published an exhaustive defense of all his own articles which 
had been condemned by the Pope, and planted himself upon 
the rock of God s revelation in the Scriptures. 

Leo X., after the expiration of the one hundred and twenty 
days of grace allowed to Luther by the terms of the bull, 
proceeded to the last step, and on the third day of January, 
1521, pronounced the ban against the Reformei and his fol 
lowers, and an interdict on the places where they should be 
harbored. But Luther had deprived the new bull of its 

The burning of the Pope s bull was the boldest and most 
eventful act of Luther. Viewed in itself, it might indeed 
have been only an act of fanaticism and folly, and proved a 
brutum fulmen. But it was preceded and followed by heroic 
acts of faith in pulling down an old church, and building up 
a new one. It defied the greatest power on earth, before 
which emperors, kings, and princes, and all the nations 
of Europe bowed in reverence and awe. It was the fiery 
signal of absolute and final separation from Koine, and 
destroyed the effect of future papal bulls upon one-half of 
Western Christendom. It emancipated Luther and the 
entire Protestant world from that authority, which, from a 
wholesome school of discipline for young nations, had become 
a fearful and intolerable tyranny over the intellect and con 
science of men. 

Luther developed his theology before the eyes of the pub 
lic; while Calvin, at a later period, appeared fully matured, 
like Minerva from the head of Jupiter. " I am one of those," 
he says, " among whom St. Augustin classed himself, who 
have gradually advanced by writing and teaching, not of 
those who at a single bound spring to perfection out of 


lie called the Pope the most holy and the most hellish 
father of Christendom. He began in l.">17 as a devout papist 
and monk, with full faith in the Roman Church and its 
divinely appointed head, protesting merely against certain 
abuses; in loll*, at the Leipzig disputation, he denied the 
divine ri ^ht, and shortly afterwards also the human right, of 
the papacy . a year later he became fully convinced that the 
papacv \vas that antichristian power predicted in the Scrip 
tures, and must he renounced at the risk of a man s salvation. 

There is no doubt that in all these stages he was equally 
sincere, earnest, and conscientious. 

Luther adhered to the position taken in the act of Dec. 10, 
1")2(J, with unchanging firmness. He never regretted it for a 
moment. He had burned the ship behind him ; he could not, 
and lie would nut. return. To the end of his life he regarded 
and treated the Pope of Rome in his oilicial capacity as the 
verv Antichrist, and expected that he soon would be de 
stroyed by spiritual force at the second coming of Christ. At 
Schmalkalden in 1">:)7 lie prayed that God might fill all Prot 
estants with hatred of the Pope. One of his last and most 
violent books is directed "Against the Papacy at Rome, 
founded by the Devil," Wittenberg, If)-!"). 1 He calls Paul 
III. the ".Most hellish Father," and addresses him as kk Your 
Hellishness," instead of "Your Holiness/ He promises at 
the close to do still better in another book, and prays that in 

1 Wi<li-r It* r<ii>xttfiniii zn /. "///. mm Ti-iifrl tji-st iflrt (in the Krl. <.!., 
XXVI. I lv- j-js). A rude wood-nit on tin- title-page represents tin- 1 ope 
with long don key-cars going into the jaws of hell, while, demons are punehing 

aild jeering at llini. Llltlier e;ills the I opc (p. L"JS) " 1 iljtxti ,s7 //,/ / lilll[/<il 
Esclxnhi rn nn<l n-nl imniti 111 L ii<j<-mn<n<l." The hook was provoked hy two 
most jresuiuj>tuous letters of I ope I aul III. to the Emperor Charles V., 
rebuking him for pivint? rest to the Protestants at the Diet of s.p-i-r, 1"H, 
till the meet in-.; of a jjeneral eoiim-il. and reminding him ! the terrihle end 
of those who dare to violate the priestly prerogatives. King Ferdinand, the, 
Emperor s brother, read the hook through, and remarked, " \V> t ,n <i:< /<o>< n 
\Vnrti lirrnitN irnren, .so Int/li <l< / l.ntln r nil-lit nll i/rxrln-li > //." Hut not 
a few sincere friends of Luther thought at the timu that In: tlid more harm 
than good to his own eause hy this hook. 


case of his death, God may raise another one "a thousand 
fold more severe ; for the devilish papacy is the last evil on 
earth, and the worst which all the devils with all their power 
could contrive. God help us. Amen." Thus he wrote, not 
under the inspiration of liquor or madness, as Roman his 
torians have suggested, but in sober earnest. His dying 
words, as reported by Ratzeburger, his physician, were a pre 
diction of the approaching death of the papacy : 

"Pestis eram vivus, moriens tua mom ero Papa." 

From the standpoint of his age, Luther regarded the Pope 
and the Turk as "the two arch-enemies of Christ and his 
Church," and embodied this view in a hymn which begins, 

" Erhdlt uns, Hcrr, hei dcinem Wort 
Und steur dcs PapsVs und Tiirken J/brc?." 1 

This line, like the famous eightieth question of the Hei 
delberg Catechism which denounces the popish mass as an 
"accursed idolatry," gave much trouble in mixed communi 
ties, and in some it was forbidden by Roman-Catholic magis 
trates. Modern German hymn-books wisely substitute " nil 
enemies," or " enemies of Christ," for the Pope and the Turk. 
In order to form a just estimate of Luther s views on the 
papacy, it must not be forgotten that they were uttered in 
the furnace-heat of controversy, and with all the violence of 
his violent temper. They have no more weight than his 
equally sweeping condemnation of Aristotle and Thomas 

49. TJte Reformation and the Papacy. 

Here is the place to interrupt the progress of events, and 
to reflect on the right or wrong of the attitude of Luther 
and the Reformation to the papacy. 

1 It appeared in King s Gesanytnicfi, Wittenberg, 1543, under the title: 
" Ein Khidcrlicd zn xinf/cn, wider die zween Ertzfcinde Christ i und seiner 
hciliycn Kirchcn, den Papst und Turkcn." 


The Reformers held the opinion that the papacy was an 
antichristian institution, and some of the Protestant con 
fessions of faith have given symbolical sanction to this 
theory. They did not mean, of course, that every individual 
Pope was an Antichrist (Luther spoke respectfully of Leo X.), 
nor that the papacy as such \vas antichristian: Melanchthon, 
at least, conceived of the possibility of a Christian papacy, or 
a general superintendence of the Church for the preservation 
of order and unity. 1 

They had in vie\v simply the institution as it was at their 
time, when it stood in open and deadly opposition to what 
they regarded as the truth of the gospel of Christ, and the 
free preaching of the same. Their theory does not necessa 
rily exclude a liberal and just appreciation of the papacy 
before and after the Reformation. 

And in this respect a great change lias taken place among 
Protestant scholars, with the progress of exegesis and the 
knowledge of church history. 

1. The prophetic Scripture texts to which the Reformers 
and early Protestant divines used to appeal for their theory of 
the papacy, must be understood in accordance with the sur 
roundings and conditions of the writers and their readers 
who were to be benefited. This does not exclude, of course, 
an application to events and tendencies of the distant future, 
since history is a growing and expanding fulfillment of proph 
ecy ; but the application must be germane to the original 
design and natural meaning of the text. Few commentators 
would now find the Pope of Rome in "the little horn" of 
Daniel (7 : H, 20. 21). who had in view rather Antiochus Epi- 
phancs ; or in the Apocalyptic beast from the abyss (Rev. 
13:1), and u the mother of harlots" (17: 5), which evidently 
apply to the persecuting heathen Rome of Nero and his 

1 See his appendix to the Smalcald Articles, lo3T: DC autoritatc ct pri- 
matu Papa. 


St. John is the only biblical writer who uses the term 
"Antichrist;" 1 but he means by it, in the first instance, the 
Gnostic heresy of his own day, which denied the incarnation ; 
for he represents this denial as the characteristic sign of Anti 
christ, and represents him as being already in the world; 
yea, he speaks of " many " antichrists who had gone out of 
the Christian churches in Asia Minor. The Pope has never 
denied the incarnation, and can never do it without ceasing 
to be Pope. 

It is quite legitimate to use the terms "antichrist " and 
"antichristian " in a wider sense, of all such men and tend 
encies as are opposed to Christ and his teaching ; but we have 
no right to confine them to the Pope and the Roman Church. 
"Many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ, and shall 
deceive many" (Matt. 24:4, 11, 23, 24). 

St. Paul s prediction of the great apostasy, and the "man 
of sin, the son of perdition, who opposes and exalts himself 
against all that is called God or that is worshiped ; s;> that 
he sits in the temple of God, setting himself forth as G:;d," 2 
sounds much more than any other passage like a description 
of the papacy with its amazing claim to universal and infalli 
ble authority over the Church of God. But the application 
becomes more than doubtful when we remember that the 
apostle characterizes this antichristian apostasy as "the mys 
tery of lawlessness," already at work in his day, though 
restrained from open manifestation by some conservative 
power. 3 The papacy did not yet exist at the time ; and its 
besetting sin is not lawless freedom, but the very opposite. 

1 1 John 2: is, 22: 4:3; 2 John 7. 

2 2 Thess. 2:. 3-7. This is the passage quoted by the Westminster Con 
fession against the Pope, chap. xxv. f>. 

3 TI) yap fjLVO7T]pLOV 7/6r] tvFpytirai r//f arofuar (ivvov 6 K.O.TE\UV upri u K fievav 
yivrirai. The Roman government was at first (before the Xeronian persecu 
tion of 04) a protector of Christianity, and more particularly of Paul, who 
could effectually appeal to his Roman citizenship at Philippi, before the 
centurion at Jerusalem, and before Festus at Ctusarea. 


If we would seek for Scripture authority against the sins 
ami errors of popery, we must take our stand on our Lord s 
opposition to the traditions of the elders, which virtually set 
aside the word of (iod; on Paul s Epistles to the Cialatians 
and Romans, where he defends Christian freedom against 
legalistic bondage, and teaches the great doctrines of sin and 
grace, forgotten by Rome-, and revived by the Reformation; 
and on St. Peter s protest against hierarchical presumption 
and pride. 

There was in the early Church a general expectation that 
an Antichrist in the emphatic sense, an incarnation of the 
antichrist ian principle, a pseudo-Christ of hell, a k% world- 
deceiver" (as he is called in the newly discovered "Teaching 
of the Apostles" 1 ), should appear, and lead astray many 
Christians immediately before the second coming of Christ. 
The Reformers saw this Antichrist in the Pope, and looked 
for his speedy destruction ; but an experience of more than 
three hundred and fifty years proves that in this expectation 
they were mistaken, and that the final Antichrist is still in 
the future. 

2. As regards church history, it was as yet an unexplored 
field at the time of the Reformation; but the Reformation 
itself roused the spirit of impiirv and independent, impartial 
research. The documentary sources of the middle ages have 
only recently been made accessible on a large scale bv such 
collections as the ^Ltnumcnta Germanise. "The keys of 
Peter," says Dr. Pert/., the Protestant editor of the Mnu- 
mentti, "are still the keys of the middle ages." The greatest 
Protestant historians, ecclesiastical and secular, 1 need only 

1 <"h. Ifl: 4; krifjiwir/jtror, a very significant term, which unites tho several 
marks of tho Antichrist of .J<h:i I- .I"hn 7: <> n s.nror ktii uvTixptoTOf), of the 
Apocalypse (12:9: o rr /.m-^v rnr o^omnrji ), and of Paul, since tin- D ulncK- 
connects the, appearance of tin- \vorl<l-<|fcrivor with the increase of lawless 
ness (dro^/a, as in 2 The^s. L :T). lump, my monograph on the Didncht, 
pp. 77 aud ^14 sq. 

256 TIII-: GERMAN REFORMATION. A.D. 1517 TO 1530. 

mention Neander .and Ranke, agree in a more liberal view 
of the papacy. 1 

After the downfall of the old Roman Empire, the papacy 
was, with all its abuses and vices, a necessary and wholesome 
training-school of the barbarian nations of Western and 
Northern Europe, and educated them from a state of savage 
heathenism to that degree of Christian civilization which 
they reached at the time of the Reformation. It was a 
check upon the despotism of rude force ; it maintained the 
outward unity of the Church ; it brought the nations into 
communication; it protected the sanctity of marriage against 
the lust of princes; it moderated slavery; it softened the 
manners ; it inspired great enterprises ; it promoted the ex 
tension of Christianity; it encouraged the cause of learning 
and the cultivation of the arts of peace. 

And even now the mission of the papacy is not yet fin 
ished. It seems to be as needful for certain nations, and a 
lower stage of civilization, as ever. It still stands, not a for 
saken ruin, but an imposing pyramid completed to the very 
top. The Roman Church rose like a wounded giant from 
the struggle with the Reformation, abolished in the Council 
of Trent some of the worst abuses, reconquered a consider 
able portion of her lost territory in Europe, added to her 
dominion one-half of the American Continent, and completed 
her doctrinal and governmental system in the decrees of the 

1 Comp. especially TJanke s classical work, Die romischen P iipste in den 
letzten vler Jahrhunderten, 8th edition, Leipzig, 18S~>, :J vols. The first edi 
tion appeared 18-)4-;$0. Ranke has found a worthy successor in an English 
scholar, Dr. M. Creighton (professor of Church history in Cambridge), the 
author of an equally impartial History of tJic I ttpacy during the Period of 
the Reformation, beginning with the Great Schism, 1378. London and Bos- 
ton, 1882 sqq. (so far 4 vols. ). But the sanu> period of (he papacy is now 
being written with ample learning and ability from the modern Roman point 
of view, by Dr. Ludwig Pastor (professor of Church history at Innsbruck) 
in his GesrfiicJite der Piipste seit dem Ausydny den Mitteldlters, of which the 
first volume appeared at Freiburg-i.-B. 1880, and extends from 1305 to the 
election of Pius II. The author promises six volumes. He had the advan 
tage of using the papal archives by the effectual favor of Pope Leo XIII. 


Vatican Council. The Pope lias lost his temporal power by 
the momentous events of 1870 ; Imt he seems to be all the 
stronger in spiritual influence since 1.S7S, when Leo XIII. was 
called to occupy the chair of Leo X. An aged Italian priest 
shut up in the Vatican controls the consciences of two hun 
dred millions of human beings, that is, nearly one-half of 
nominal Christendom, and rules them with the claim of in 
fallibility in all matters of faith and duty. It is a significant 
fact, that the greatest statesman of the nineteenth century, 
and founder of a Protestant empire, who at the beginning of 
the Kiihurlannpf declared that he would never go to Canossa 
(187- ), found it expedient, after a conflict of ten years, 
to yield to an essential modification of the anti-papal May- 
laws of ls"o, without, however, changing his religious con 
viction, or sacrificing the sovereignty of the State; he even 
conferred an extraordinary distinction upon the Pope by 
selecting him as arbiter in an international dispute between 
Germany and Spain (1SS.V). 1 Hut it is perhaps still more 
remarkable, that Leo XIII. in return sent to Prince Bismarck, 
the political Luther of (iermany, the Christ Order, which was 
never given to a Protestant before, and that he supported 
him in the political campaign of 1HH7. 

3. How can we justify the Reformation, in view of the 
past history and present vitality of the Papacy / 

Ib-re the history of the Jewish Church, which is a type of 
the Christian, furnishes us with a most instructive illustration 
and conclusive answer. The Levitical hierarchy, which cul 
minated in the high priest, was of divine appointment, and a 
necessarv institution for the preservation of the theocracy. 
And yet what (Jod intended to be a blessing became a 
curse by the guilt of man: Caiaphas, the lineal descendant 
of Aaron, condemned the Messiah as a false prophet and 

1 Alexander VI., hy a stroke of his pen, divided America hetwcen Spain 
ami Portn^il: f,.-c> XIII.. in ism;, - ;IV .- the msignifirant Caroline Islands in 
the Pacific to Spain, but the free commerce to Germany.. 


blasphemer, and the synagogue cast out His apostles with 

What happened in the old dispensation was repeated on a 
larger scale in the history of Christianity. An antichristian 
element accompanied the papacy from the very beginning, 
and culminated in the corruptions at the time of the Ref 
ormation. The greater its assumed and conceded power, the 
greater were the danger and temptation of abuse. One of the 
best of Popes, Gregory the Great, protested against the title 
of " universal bishop," as an antichristian presumption. The 
Greek Church, long before the Reformation, charged the 
Bishop of Rome with antichristian usurpation ; and she 
adheres to her protest to this day. Not a few Popes, such as 
Sergius III., John XII., Benedict IX., John XXIII., and 
Alexander VI., were guilty of the darkest crimes of depraved 
human nature ; and yet they called themselves successors of 
Peter, and vicars of Christ. Who will defend the papal 
crusades against the Albigenses and Waldenses, the horrors 
of the Inquisition, the papal jubilee over the massacre of St. 
Bartholomew, and all those bloody persecutions of innocent 
people for no other crime but that of opposing the tyranny 
of Rome, and dissenting from her traditions? Liberal and 
humane Catholics would revolt at an attempt to revive the 
dungeon and the fagot against heresy and schism: but the 
Church of Rome in her official capacity has never repudiated 
the principle of persecution bv which its practice was jus- 
titled: on the contrary, Pope Gregory XVI. declared liberty 
of conscience and worship an insanity (delir amentum), and 
Pius IX. in his u Syllabus " of 18G-4 denounced it among the 
pernicious and pestilential errors of modern times. And 
what shall we say of the papal schism in the fifteenth cen 
tury, when two or three rival Popes laid all Christendom 
under the curse of excommunication ? What of the utter 
secularization of the papacy just before the Reformation, its 
absorption in political intrigues and wars and schemes of 


aggrandizement, its avarice, its shameless traflic in indul 
gences, ami all those abuses of power which called forth the 
om- hnmlre<l and one iji-ttvnmina of the (icrman nation? 
Who will stand up for the hull of excommunication against 
Luther, with its threats of burning him and his books, and 
refusing the consolations of religion to every house or com 
munity which should dare to harbor him or any of his fol 
lowers? If that bull be Christian, then we must close our 
eyes against the plain teaching of Christ in the (iospels. 

Even if the Bishop of Koine should be the legitimate suc 
cessor of Peter, as he claims, it would not shield him against 
the verdict of history. For the carnal Simon revived and re 
asserted himself from time to time in the spiritual Peter. 
The same disciple whom Christ honored as the " Rock, on 
whose confession he promised to build his Church, was soon 
afterwards called ^ Satan when he presumed to divert his 
Master from the path of suffering; the same Peter was 
rebuked when he drew the sword against Malchus; the .^aim- 
Peter, notwithstanding his boast of fidelity, denied his Lord 
and Saviour; and the same Peter incurred the severe remon 
strance of Paul at Anti idi when he practically denied the 
rights of the (lenlile converts, and virtually excluded them 
from the Church. According to the Roman legend, the 
prince of the apostles relapsed into his consistent inconsist 
ency, even a day before his martyrdom, by bribing the jailer. 
and fleeing for his life till the Lord appeared to him with the 
cross at the spot of the memorial chapel Do mine quo rudtx. 
Will the Pope ever imitate Peter in his bitter repentance for 
denying Christ? 

If the Apostolic Chureh typically foreshadows the whole 
history of Christianit v, we may well see in the temporary 
Collision between Peter and Paul the type of the antagonism 
between Humanism and Protestantism. The Reformation 
was a revolt against legal bondage, and an assertion of evan 
gelical freedom. It renewed the protest of Paul against 


Peter, and it succeeded. It secured freedom in religion, and 
as a legitimate consequence, also intellectual, political, and 
civil freedom. It made the Word of God with its instruction 
and comfort accessible to all. This is its triumphant vindica 
tion. Compare for proof Protestant Germany under Wil 
liam L, with Roman-Catholic Germany under Maximilian I.; 
England under Queen Victoria, with England under Henry 
VII.; Calvinistic Scotland and Lutheran Scandinavia in the 
nineteenth century, with Roman Scotland and Scandinavia in 
the fifteenth. Look at the origin and growth of free Holland 

v!3 O 

and free North America. Contrast England with Spain of 
the present day; Prussia with Austria; Holland with Portu 
gal; the United States and Canada with the older Mexico 
and Peru or Brazil. Consider the teeming Protestant litera 
ture in every department of learning, science and art; and 
the countless Protestant churches, schools, colleges, uni 
versities, charitable institutions and missionary stations scat 
tered all over the globe. Surely, the Reformation can stand 
the test: "By their fruits ye shall know them." 


Opinions of representative Protestant historians who can not be charged 
with partisan bias or Romanizing tendency: 

"Whatever judgment," says LEOPOLD vox RAXKK, who was a good 
Lutheran (Die rdtnischen Piifixtc, I. 1 J !>), "we may form of the Popes of 
former times, they had always great interests in view: the care of an 
oppressed religion, the conllict witli heathenism, the propagation of Chris 
tianity among the Northern nations, the founding of an indtp-ndent hier 
archical power. It belongs to the dignity <>f human existence to will and to 
execute something great. These tendencies the Popes kept in higher 

In the last volume of his great work, published after his death (]] elt- 
ffCKrJtirfitc, Siebenter Theil, Leipzig, 1SSO. pp. :}\ I-:)!:)), UAXKI-: gives his 
estimate of the typical Pope Gregory VJL, of which this is a condensed 
translation : 

" The hierarchical system of Gregory rests on the attempt to make the 
clerical power the basis of the entire human existence. This explains the two 
principles which characterize the system. the command of [clerical] celi 
bacy, and the prohibition of investiture by the hands of a layman. By the 


first, the lowtT clergy were to be made ;i corporation free from all personal 
relations to human society; by tin- second, the higher clergy were to be 
secured against all influence of the secular power. The great hierareh had 
well considered his stamlpoint : he thereliy met a want of the times, which 
regarded the clergy, so to say, as higher beings. All his words had dignity, 
consistency ami power. He had a native talent for worldly affairs. Peter 
Damiuni probably had this in view when he called him, once, the holy 
Satan. . . . (Jregory s deliverances contain no profound doctrines; nearly 
all were known before. But they are summed up by him in a system, the 
sincerity of which no one could call in question. His dying words: 1 di>- 
in exile, because I loved justice, express his inmost conviction. Hut \\ e 
must not forget that it was only the hierarchical justice which he defended to 
Lis last breath. In the thirteenth chapter, entitled " Canossa," Ranke 
presents his views (Mi the conflict between (Gregory VII. and Henry IV.. <>r 
between the hierarchical and the secular power. 

Aiu.r H.VIJNACK, a prominent historian of the present generation, in 
his commemorative address on Mm-tin L><t/,< r (( lessen, iss:5, p. 7), calls 
"the idea of the papacy the greatest and most humane idea (die yroxxte utid 
huin inxtc I<l f) which the middle age produced." 

It was in a review of Ranke s IHxtnrij of tin /V.yir.v, that Lord MACAIT.AY, 
a Protestant of Scotch ancestry, penned his brilliant eulogy on the Roman 
Church as the oldest and most venerable power in Christendom, which is 
likely to outlast all other governments and churches. "She was great and 
respected," he concludes, " before the Saxon set his foot on Britain, before 
the Frank had passed the Rhine, when Grecian eloquence still flourished at 
Antioch, when idols were still worshiped in the Temple of Mecca. And she 
may still exist in undiminished vigor, when some traveler from New Zea 
land shall, in the midst of a vast solitude, take his stand on a broken arch of 
London Bridge to sketch the ruins of St. Paul s." 1 

Hut we must not overlook a later testimony, in which the eloquent his 
torian supplemented and qualified this eulogy : 

" From the time," says MA< At i.AV in the first chapter of his Ilixtnr;/ <>f 
Eit jl iii I, " when the barbarians overran the Western Empire, to the time of 
the revival of letters, the influence of the Church of Rome bad been gen 
erally favorable to science, to civ Hi/at ion. ami to good government. Hut, 
during the last three centuries, to stunt the growth of the human mind 
has been her chief object. Throughout Christendom, whatever advance has 
been made in knowledge, in freedom, in wealth, and in the arts of life, has been 
made in spite of her. and has everywhere been in inverse proportion to 
her power. The loveliest and must fertile provinces of Europe have, under 
her rule, been sunk in poverty, in political .servitude, and in intellectual tor- 

1 Flrnt puUIrn <l In the Killnlmruh Itovlcw, Ortolior. 1110. Tho piumn. c In often quoted l>y 
Romiiri Catholic.. <. a., l.y An-liLi-Imp Spul.lliiif. in hi- i/i*tr</ <,/(/,, / mt. A ./., p. HIT <|<j. ; 
but they find it cuiiwiiivnl to Ignore llu- oilier piiffUKi- from LU llintury of t ngiund. 

262 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A.I). 1517 TO 1530. 

por; while Protestant countries once proverbial for sterility ami barbarism, 
have been turned, by skill and industry, into gardens, and ran boast of a 
long list of heroes and statesmen, philosophers and poets. AVhoever, know 
ing what Italy and Scotland naturally are, and what, four hundred years ago, 
they actually were, shall now compare the country round Rome with the 
country round Edinburgh, will be able to form some judgment as to the 
tendency of papal domination. The descent of Spain, once the first among 
monarchies, to the lowest depths of degradation; the elevation of Holland, 
in spite of many natural disadvantages, to a position such as no common 
wealth so small has ever reached, teach the same lesson. AVhoever passes, 
in (Germany, from a Roman-Catholic to a Protestant principality, in Switzer 
land from a Roman-Catholic to a Protestant canton, in Ireland from a Roman- 
rat holic to a Protestant county, finds that he has passed from a lower to a 
higher grade of civilization. On the other side of the Atlantic, the same law 
prevails. The Protestants of the United States have 1 left far behind them 
the Roman Catholics of Mexico, Peru, and Brazil. The Roman Catholics 
of Lower Canada remain inert, while the whole continent round them is in 
a ferment with Protestant activity and enterprise. The French have doubt 
less shown an energy and an intelligence which, even when misdirected, have 
justly entitled them to be called a great people. But this apparent excep 
tion, when examined, will be found to confirm the rule: for in no country 
that is called Roman-Catholic has the Roman-Catholic Church, during sev 
eral generations, possessed so little authority as in France. 

It is dillicult to say whether England owes more to the Roman-Catholic 
religion or to the Reformation. For the amalgamation of races and for 
the abolition of villenage, she is chiefly indebted to the influence which the 
priesthood in the middle ages exercised over the laity. For political and 
intellectual freedom, and for all the blessings which political and intellectual 
freedom have brought in their train, she is chiefly indebted to the great 
rebellion of the laity against the priesthood." 

50. Cliarhx V. 

Most of the works on Charles V. are histories of his times, in which he 
forms the central figure. Much new material has been brought to light from 
the archives of Brussels and Simancas. lie is extravagantly lauded by 
Spanish, and indiscriminately censured by French historians. The Scotch 
Robertson, the American Preseott, and the German Ilanke are impartial. 

1. Jon. Sr.KIDAX (d. l.V)fi): T)c Stcitn Ki-li jnm m H /.V/ym^/m C urln V. 
Cusuri ( niiDiii Dhirii, Argentor. l.V>.~) fol. (best ed. by Am Ende. Frf.-a.- 
M., 1 "<>). Ln\v. v. SKCKKNUOKK: Com. hi*t. <( i>nl. <le Lntherun- 
isnto sii c de lleformatione lieliyionis, Leipzig, l(ii)4. Goes to the year 

50. CHAKLKS V. 03 

i;,|r,. The English Cnl> n<l<tr* of >t<it<~r<ii **, > / ">" "/ , publi.xhed by 
lh- Master of the KolK I)i; TIKU : Histi.ri.i sni 7V/y,.,r/x (trom the 
death of Francis I.). The Histories of Spain by MAUIANA (Madrid, 
1M7-:. :. , Uo vols. >^vo); ZL IUTA ((, aragova, lGG J-1710, u vols. fol.): FI;I;- 



ANN A\ D - Xxxi 

IIAIM.KS V. From an cni, r ravini, by 11. liebuin, in l^ . A. 

ICKISA-* (French trans.. Amsterdam, 17">1, 10 vols. -Itri); SAF.A/.AI: DE 
MKMIM/A (Mailriil, 1T7 -71, :) vols. fol.); MOHKSTO L.\i i KMI; (vols. 
XI. ami XII.. ls:,:;i. etc. 

II. HiiL raiihies. diaries dictated to bis secretary, William van Male, while 
leisurely sailing on the Khine, from ( ologne to Maycncr, in .Iimi-, l.VA), 


and afterwards at Augsburg, under the refreshing shade of the F agger 
gardens, a fragmentary autobiography, in Spanish or French, which was 
known to exist, but disappeared, until Baron KEKVVN DE LETTKNIIOVE, 
member of the Koyal Academy of Belgium, discovered in the National 
Library at Paris, in 1801, a Portuguese translation of it, and published 
a French translation from the same, with an introduction, under the 
title: Commcntaires de Charles-Quint, Brussels, 1802. An English trans 
lation by LEON AIID FRANCIS SIMPSON : The Autobioyraphy of /lie Em 
peror Charles F"., London, 1802 (101 and xlviii. j>p. ]. It is a summary 
of the Emperor s journeys and expeditions (" Sammario da* ] in</(* e 
Jornada*"), from 1510 to 1548. It dwells upon the secular events; but 
incidentally reveals, also, his feelings against the Protestants, whom he 
charges with heresy, obstinacy, and insolence, and against Pope Paul 
III., whom he hated for his arrogance, dissimulation, and breach of 
promise. Comp. on this work, the introduction of Lettenhove (trans 
lated by Simpson), and the acute criticism of Kanke, vol. vi. 75 sqij. 

ALFONSO ULLOA: Vita di Carlo T., Veuet., 1500. SAXDOVAL: Historia 
de In Vida y Hcchos del Emperadbr Carlos (Juinto, Valladolid, 1006 
(Pampelona, 1018; Antwerp, 1081, 2 vols.). SEI>ULVEDA (whom the 
Emperor selected as his biographer): DC Rebu* Gextis Caroli T . Iiui>era- 
toris, Madrid, 1780 (ami older editions). G. LETI: Vila del Imj>< ratore 
Carlo 1 ., 1700, 4 vols. A. DEMrsiCA (in Menckenius, Scriptore* llerum 
Germanic-arum, vol. I., Leipzig, 1728). WILLIAM ROBERTSON (d. 
17l>o ): The Hixtory of the Reiyn of (lie Emperor Charles V., London, 
170!), 3 vols.; Oth ed., 1787, 4 vols.; new cd. of his Work*, London, 
1840, 8 vols. (vols. III., IV., V.); best ed., Phila. (Lippincott) 1857, 
3 vols., with a valuable supplement by W. II. PIIKSCOTT on the Empe 
ror s life after his abdication, from the archives of Simancas (III., 327- 
510). HKKMAXX IiAfi(JAUTKx: Gcschichte Karl* V., Stuttgart, 1885 
sqq. (to embrace 1 4 vols.; chiefly based on the English Calendars and the 
manuscript diaries of the Venetian historian Marino Sanuto). 

III. Documents and Treatises on special parts of his history. G. C AMPOSI: 
Carlo I", in Modcna (in Arc/iirio Stortro Italimm, Florence, 1842-53, 
25 vols., App. ). I). G. VAX MALE: Lett re* *ur la vie in/ertenre de 
V Emnerenr Charles-Quint, Brussels, 1843. K. LAXZ: Correspondenz des 
J\<ii*er* Karl V. (lit* dem kai*erlichcn Archie und der nibliotherjue de 
Itiiryotjne in ]ti it**el, Leipzig, 1844-40, 3 vols. ; Stacitftpapiere zxr Ge- 
sd/ichte de* Kai*er* Karl V., Stuttgart, 1845; and Arten*tii<-},-r> und 
Jlriefe zur GeRchichte Karl* V., Wien, 1^53-57. G. HEIXE: Hricfe an 
J\ai*er Karl V., <jc*c1trleben ion seinem Bdrlitrater (Garcia de Loaysa) in 
d< a Jahren 1530-32, Berlin, 1848 (from the Simancas archives). Sir W. 
MAXWELL STIHLIXG: The Cloi*fer-Li.t i of C/mrh* I ., London, 1852. 
F. A. A. MK;XET: (, harle*-Qnint ; *on abdication, son sejoiir et *a mort 
an inonastere de Yuste, Paris, 1854; and liicalite dc Fran^ oi* I. ct de 

50. CHARLES V. 2G5 

Charles-Quint. l*7. r >, 2 vols. AMI>KK Pi< MOT: ( hnrlrs-Qnint, Cltro- 
ni j te <le x<i vie intt-rienre el de xa cie jmliti jue, de x<m a^dit-utitni et de xa 
rttraite </u/i.s lc clnltre de Yuxte, Paris, ls.j-4. <;.\< HAKI (ki-rper of the 
Bridie archives): Itetruite et inort de Chur lex-Quint <tn unnuixtere de 
Yuste (tin; original documents of Siwancas), I>ru>sc!s. ls54-.~)f>, "2 vols. ; 
C<>rre*i><ind<in<-e de (. fairies-Quint et de Adrim \ L, HrussHs, 1S.V.. 
HKXNK: Hixtoire dn ri- /ne de Charlex } . en li l ji jne, Brussels, 1S">8 
sjq., H) vols. Til. JTSTK: I,ex Payx-lnix .X//M.S ( Inn-Its I ., ls51. (Jir- 
SKI I K DK LKVA: Stnriu docuinentatii di Carlo I . / mm luzione <ilT 
Itnlin, Vt-uicc, IM;). KOSLKH: /Jie Kuiwiruhl h urlx ] ., U ion, 18<iS. 
W. M.\fi:Kxni:KcilKi:: A ar/ T. </ die dmtsclioi I l-otextmitcn, 1545- 
15. r >5, Diisst hlorf, 1S( ).">; Studien nnd tikizzi n znr (i> xrhiclttc d< r liifurnm- 
tivitxzi it, Leipzig, 1S74, pp. ( .i .)-l;j;3. A. v. Dun i 1:1. : h ttixer Karl V. 
nnd <li< ri un. Cri< 1 544-154G. ,} Abth. Miinclicii, 1>77 si|i|. 
IV. Ctniip. also KAXKK: Dt-utxchc- Gcschichtf, I. L 4i)s<|(|., :511 si|f|.; and on 
Charles s latt-r history in vols. II., III., IV.. V., VI. JAX^SKX: (>\- 
sclii -htedixiliHlm-hcn To/Av.s. 11. i: ,l *< {l[ ., and vol. III. WKHKU: All- 
fj(nnlne. \Vilt>jwhl< hti\ vol. X. (1S<(), 1 sc|<j. II:KS< ( TT S I liillp //., 
lik. 1, ch:ip. 1 and . (vol. I. l- J<i; L".U-o.Jl). Mori.Kv s liise of the 
Lttttch Republic, vol. I., Introduction. 

T>efore passing t<> tlie Diet of Worms, we must make tlie 
acquaintance of Charles V. lie is, next to Martin Luther, 
the most conspicuous and powerful personality of his ay;e. 
The history of his ivi^n is the history of Kurope for more 
than a third of a century (from 1"> 1^0-1. ">.">!>). 

In the midst of the early conllicts of the Reformation, the 
Emperor Maximilian I. died at \Vels, Jan. ll . 1">11. He had 
worn the (ierman crown twenty-six years, and is called k * the 
last knight." \Vith him the middle aj^es were huried, and 
the modern era dawned on Kurope. 

It was a critical period for the Empire: the religion of 
Mohammed threatened Christianity, Protestantism endan 
gered Catholicism. From the Fast the Turks pushed their 
conquests to the walls of Vienna, as seven hundred years 
before, the Arahs, crossing the Pyrenees, had assailed Chris 
tian Europe from the West ; in the interior the Reformation 
Spread with irresistible force, and shook the foundations of 
the Roman Church. Where was the ircnius who could save 

266 Till-: CJ HUMAN IlEFOUMATION. A.D. 1517 TO 1530. 

both Christianity and the Reformation, the unity of the Em 
pire and the unity of the Church? A most difficult, yea, an 
impossible task. 

The imperial crown descended naturally on Maximilian s 
grandson, the young king of Spain, who became the most 
powerful monarch since the days of Charles the Great. He 
was the heir of four royal lines which had become united by 
a series of matrimonial alliances. 

A ever was a prince born to a richer inheritance, or entered 
upon public life with graver responsibilities, than Charles V. 
Spanish, Burgundian, and German blood mingled in his 
veins, and the good and bad qualities of his ramified ancestry 
entered into his constitution. He was born with his eventful 
century (Feb. "24, 1500), at Ghent in Flanders, and educated 
under the tuition of the Lord of Chiovres, and Hadrian 
of Utrecht, a theological professor of strict Dominican ortho 
doxy and severe piety, who by his inlhience became the 
successor of Leo X. in the papal chair. His father, Philip 
L, was the onlv son of Maximilian and Mary of Burgundy 
(daughter of Charles the Bold), and cuts a small figure 
among tin 1 sovereigns of Spain as "Philip the Handsome" 
(Filipe el Hermoso), a frivolous, indolent, and useless 
prince. His mother was Joanna, called "Crazy Jane" (Juana 
la Loca), second daughter of Ferdinand and Isabella, and 
famous for her tragic fate, her insanity, long imprisonment, 
and nidrbid devotion to the corpse of her faithless husband, 
for whom, during his life, she had alternately shown pas 
sionate love and furious jealousy. She became, after the 
death of her mother (Nov. 2<>, 1504), the nominal queen of 
Spain, and dragged out a dreary existence of seventy-six 
years (she died April 11, 1555). 1 

1 Her sad story is told by the contemporary historians Gomez, Peter 
Martyr, Zurita, and Sandoval (from whom the scattered account of I rescott 
is derived in bis 1-", TilhnDi <1 <tu<l I.^ihclln, 1 1 MM. 17<> *(\<\., ~l- sqq.. 260 sqq.), 
and more fully revealed in the Simancas and Brussels documents. It has 
been ably discussed by several modern writers with reference to the unproved 

50. CHARLES V. 207 

Charlie inherited the shrewdness of Ferdinand, the piety 
of Isabella, and the melancholy temper of his mother which 
plunged her into insanity, and induced him to exchange the 
imperial tlimne for a monastic cell. The same temper re 
appeared in the gloomv bigotry of his son Philip II., who 
lived the life of a despot and a monk in his cloister-palace of 
the Kscoiial. The persecuting Queen Marv of Kngland, a 
granddaughter of Isabella, and wife of Philip of Spain, had 
likewise a melancholy and desponding disposition. 

From his ancestrv Charles fell heir to an empire within 
whose boundaries the sun never set. At the death of his 
father (Sept. 25, lo<>0), he became, by right of succession, 
the sovereign of Burgundy and the Netherlands; at the 
death of Ferdinand (.Ian. 2 -}, 151i>), he inherited the crown 
of Spain with her Italian dependencies (Naples, Sicilv, Sar 
dinia), and her newlv acquired American possessions (to 
which were afterwards added the conquests of Mexico and 
IVru ) : at the death of .Maximilian, he succeeded to the 
hereditarv provinces of the house of Habsburg, and soon 
afterwards to the empire of (iermany. In 15:)0 he was also 
crowned king of Lombardy, and emperor of the Romans, by 
the Pope. 

The imperial crown of (icrmany was hotly contested be 
tween him and Francis I. All the arts of diplomacy and 
enormous sums of money were spent on electioneering by 

s of n.Tj Miroth that ho was never insane, but suspected ami tor 
tured C. l for heresy. ami i-ni.-lly treat.- 1 l>y Charles. Hut her troubles bewail 
loii ^ Id-fore tin- I; -for i nation, an 1 IPT me lam-holy disposil ion was derived from 
h>r grandmother. Sin- rve.-i\ .-d t lie r\t i erne unrtioii from priestly ha mis, ami 
hor last \vor-.l was; ".F.-Mis. tlion ( ni-iti<-i| ( )m-, dflivi-r nir." Sec (Jiistav 
Bor;curotli (a < it-nnan s.-holar tlii-n n sidin, in Lomloii ), /-/ tti /.-, l)< *imtch< x, 
ami SI nl i I lijur^ ntntin / In I/K nfjotiiitimtx txtu-nn J\n<ilnn>l <in<l > /<a//l 
pffHi m- l in tin tn-rliii-fx nl Siiiitiiirns iiii l t Ixrirlti rr. Sllpjil. to Vol. I. ami 

1!., London. 1^ ,< ; (Jaclianl. Jnin In r.,ll< , r,rn.\c|l-s. 1SC,!; ami Jt-nnnn 
la r<>ll< -I r/i, /,-/,* I ., in tin- linll.-iin of ill,- I5rnss,-|s Arad.-my. IsTn .-md 
187 - : i:..|.-r. ./ ./,,/, , ,/;/ ir ( /,, ( .s;,,, ,;-/.. K, ;</!i> r., n r ./w///v/i. \Vii-n. lsT<i; 
ManriMilin-i-licr. .!i,l,nnn<i //> W-iltiixiinii ir. in his "Studi M uml bku/i-n /ur 
Gesch. dt-r lifforuiationszeit, Lcii>^ij, r , 1>T1, pp. T">- J.S. 


both parties. The details reveal a rotten state of the politi 
cal morals of the times. Pope Leo at first favored the claims 
of King Francis, who was the natural rival of the Austrian 
and Burguudian power, but a stranger to the language and 
manners of Germany. The seven electors assembled at 
Frankfurt offered the dignity to the wisest of their number, 
Frederick of Saxony; but he modestly and wisely declined 
the golden burden lined with thorns. lie would have pro 
tected the cause of the Reformation, but was too weak and 
too old for the government of an empire threatened by dan 
ger from without and within. 1 He nominated Charles; and 
this self-denying act of a Protestant prince decided the elec 
tion, June 28, 1520. When the ambassadors of Spain offered 
him a large reward for his generosity, he promptly refused 
for himself, and declared that he would dismiss any of his 
servants for taking a bribe. 

Charles was crowned with unusual splendor, Oct. 23, at 
Aachen (Aix-la-Chapelle), win-re the founder of the German 
Empire lies buried. In his oath he pledged himself to pro 
tect the Catholic faith, the Roman Church, and its head the 

The new emperor was then only twenty years of age, and 
showed no signs of greatness. " Jfoniluin . " ("Not yet") was 
the motto which he had adopted for his maiden shield in 
a tournament at Valladolid two years before, lie afterwards 
exchanged it for " Plus Ultra" lie was a good rider, and 
skilled in military exercises ; he could break a lance with any 
knight, and vanquish a bull in the ring, like an expert 
espada ; but he was in feeble health, with a pale, beardless, 
and melancholy face, and without interest in public affairs. 
lie had no sympathy with the German nation, and was igno 
rant of their language. But as soon as he took the reins of 
power into his own hands, he began to develop a rare genius 

1 Martin (Uistoire <Je France, VII. 4 .<t >) says: tl L clecteur Frederic n cir 
vait n t In hardiesse ni le yenie d uu ttl r6/e." 

50. CHARLES V. -69 

for political and military government. His beard grew, and 
he acquired some knowledge of most of the dialects of his 
subjects. He usually spoke and wrote French and Spanish. 

Charles V. as Emperor. 

Without being truly great, he was an extraordinary man, 
and ranks, perhaps, next to Charlemagne and (Jtho I. among 
the German emperors. 

He combined the selfish conservatism of the house of 
Habsburg, the religious ardor of the Spaniard, and the war 
like spirit of the Dukes of Burgundy. He was the shrewdest 
prince in Europe, and an indefatigable worker. He usually 
slept only four hours a day. He was slow in forming his 
resolutions, but inllexible in carrying them into practice, and 
Unscrupulous in choosing the means. He thought much, and 
spoke little ; he listened to advice, and followed his own judg 
ment, lie had the sagacity to select and to keep the ablest 
men for his cabinet, the army and navy, and the diplomatic 
service. lie was a good soldier, and could endure every 
hardship and privation except lasting. He was the first of 
the three great captains oi his age, the Duke of Alva being 
the second, and Constable 1 Montmorency the third. 

His insatiable ambition involved him in several wars with 
France, in which he was generally successful against his bold 
but less prudent rival. Francis I. It was a struggle for su 
premacy in Italy, and in the councils of Europe. He twice 
marched upon Paris. 1 

He engaged in about forty expeditions, by land and sea, 
in times when there were neither railroads nor steamboats. 
He seemed to be ubiquitous in his vast dominions. His 
greatest service to Christendom was his defeat of the army 

1 Martin, from liis Fr.-nch standpoint, rails tlie controversy between 
FranHs I. and Charles V. "/a luttc <!< In nationality fran^aitte mntrc In 
monxtnicuxr jmiitminrc, issue dcx coinbinaiAonA art(ftcicUcn tic riifrfdit4 
f(o<lnlc, fjiii if)i,i ft C assert Isseinent dts tiatiunalitfa enro^cuwa." (Hint. 
de Fran,;, VIII., -J.) 


of Solyman the Magnificent, whom lie forced to retreat to 
Constantinople (153:2), and his rescue of twenty thousand 
Christian slaves and prisoners from the grasp of the African 
corsairs (1535), who, under the lead of the renowned Bar- 
barossa, spread terror on the shores of the Mediterranean. 
These deeds raised him to the height of power in Europe. 

But he neglected the internal affairs of Germany, and left 
them mostly to his brother Ferdinand. He characterized 
the Germans as "dreamy, drunken, and incapable of in 
trigue/ lie felt more at home in the rich Netherlands, 
which furnished him the greatest part of his revenues. But 
Spain was the base of his monarchy, and the chief object 
of his care. Under his reign, America began to play a part 
in the history of Europe as a mine of gold and silver. 

lie aimed at an absolute monarchy, with a uniformity in 
religion, but that was an impossibility ; France checked his 
political, Germany his ecclesiastical ambition. 

Ills Personal Character. 

In his private character he was superior to Francis I., 
Henry VIII., and most contemporary princes, but by no 
means free from vice. He was lacking in those personal at 
tractions which endear a sovereign to his subjects. 1 Under a 
cold and phlegmatic exterior he harbored fiery passions. He 
was calculating, revengeful, implacable, and never forgave an 
injury. He treated Francis I., and the German Protestant 
princes in the Schmalkaldian war, with heartless severity. 
He was avaricious, parsimonious, and gluttonous. He in 
dulged in all sorts of indigestible delicacies, anchovies, 
frogs legs, eel-pasties, and drank large quantities of iced 
beer and Rhine wine ; lie would not listen to the frequent 
remonstrances of his physicians and confessors, and would 
rather endure the discomforts of dyspepsia and gout than 

1 Motley (I. IIS) calls him "a man without a sentiment and without a 
tear." But ho did shed tears at the death of his favorite sister Eleauore 
(Prescott, I. :JiM). 

restrain his appetite, which feasted on twenty dishes at a 
single, meal. In his autobiography he speaks of a fourteenth 

attack of gout, which "lasted till the spring of 1548." l 

!! had taste for music and painting, lie had also some 
literary talent, and wrote or dictated an autobiography in 
the simple, objective style of Ciesar, ending with the defeat 
of the Prototant league (1 f>4S) ; but it is dry and cold, 
destitute of gieat ideas and noble sentiments. 

lie married his cousin, Donna Isabella of Portugal, at 
Seville, 1">:M, and lived in happy union with her till her 
sudden death in 1539; but during his frequent absences 
from Spain, where she always remained, as well as before 
his marriage, and alter her death, he indulged in ephemeral 
unlawful attachments. 2 lie had at least two illegitimate 
children, the famous Margaret, Duchess of Parma, and Don 
Juan of Austria, the hero of Lepanto (15471578), who lies 
buried hv his side in the Kscorial. 

Charles has often been painted by the master hand of Ti 
tian, whom he greatly admired. He was of middle si/e, 
broad-shouldered, deep-chested, with a commanding forehead, 
an aquiline nose, a pale, grave, and melancholy countenance. 
His blue and piercing eye, his blonde, almost reddish hair, 
and fair skin, betokened his German origin, and his project 
ing lower jaw, with its thick, heavy lip, was characteristic 
of the princes of Ilabsburg; but otherwise he looked like a 
Spaniard, as he was at heart. 

Incessant labors and cares, gluttony, and consequent gout, 
Undermined his constitution, and at the age of fiftv he was 
prematurely old, and had to be carried on a litter like a help- 

1 English translation, p. } !. 

* Motley (I. lL :i) says, on the authority of the Venetian amhassador, 
Badovaro: " II.- was addicted to vulgar ami miscellaneous incontinence." 
On the same authority he reports of Philip II.: " He was grossly licentious. 
It was his chi.-f amusement to issue forth at night, disguised, that, he might 
Indulge in vulgar and miscellaneous incontinence in the common haunts of 
Vice." (I. 14.:..) 


less cripple. Notwithstanding his many victories and suc 
cesses, he was in his later years an unhappy and disappointed 
man, but sought and found his last comfort in the religion of 
his fathers. 

51. The Ecclesiastical Policy of Charles V. 

The ecclesiastical .policy of Charles was Roman Catholic 
without being ultramontane. He kept his coronation oath. 
All his antecedents were in favor of the traditional faith. 
He was surrounded by ecclesiastics and monks. He was 
thoroughly imbued with the Spanish type of piety, of which 
his grandmother is the noblest and purest representative. 
Isabella the Catholic, the greatest of Spanish sovereigns, 
u the queen of earthly queens," J conquered the Moors, pat 
ronized the discoverer of America, expelled the Jews, and 
established the Inquisition, all for the glory of the Virgin 
Mary and the Catholic religion. 2 A genuine Spaniard be 
lieves, with Gonzalo of Oviedo, that "powder against the 
infidels is incense to the Lord." With him, as with his Moor 
ish antipode, the measure of conviction is the measure of 
intolerance, and persecution the evidence of zeal. The burn 
ing of heretics became in the land of the Inquisition a sacred 
festival, an " act of faith ; " 3 and such horrid spectacles were 

1 So Shakespeare calls her, and praises her "sweet gentleness, "saint 
like meekness," "wife-like government, obeying in commanding." 

- The inscription on the tomb of Ferdinand and Isabella in the Papilla 
Real of the cathedral at (Iranada is characteristic: " Mahomcticr xccfc pros- 
trtitofi-s ct heretice pervicacie cxtinctores Ferdiiiaiidux Ar<i<n>num ft Ifclisa- 
bctfta Cantdlc ct uxor unanimes Catholici fij>i>cll(iti Morniorcx clfnvlimtur 
Jioc Inninlo." The sepulcher is wrought in delicate alabaster ; on it are ex 
tended the life-size marble figures of the Catholic sovereigns; their faces are 
portraits; Ferdinand wears the garter, Isabella the cross of Santiago; the 
four doctors of the Church ornament the corners, the twelve apostles the 
sides. Under the same monument rest the ashes of their unfortunate daugh 
ter Joanna and lu-r worthless husband. I have seen no monument which 
surpasses this in chaste and noble simplicity (unless it be that of King Fred 
erick William III. and (^ueen Louisa at Charlottenburg), and none which ll 
more suggestive of historical meditation and reflection. 

8 Aetna Jidei ; auto-dc-fe in Spanish ; auto-da-fe in Portuguese. 


in the reign of Philip II. as popular as the bull-fights which 
still flourish in Spain, and administer to the savage taste for 

Charles heard the mass daily, listened to a sermon on Sun 
day and holy days, confessed and communed four times a 
year, and was sometimes seen in his tent at midnight on his 
knees before the crucifix. lie never had any other concep 
tion of Christianity than the Roman-Catholic, and took no 
time to investigate theological questions. 

He fully approved of the Pope s bull against Luther, 
and ordered it to be executed in the Netherlands. In his 
retreat at Yuste, he expressed regret that he had kept his 
promise of safe-conduct; in other words, that he had not 
burned the heretic at Worms, as Sigismund had burned Hus 
at Constance. lie never showed the least sympathy with 
the liberal tendencies of the age, and regarded Protestantism 
as a rebellion against Church and State. lie would have 
crushed it out if he had had the power; but it was too strong 
for him. and he needed the Protestant support for his wars 
against France, and against the Turks. lie began in the 
Netherlands that fearful persecution which was carried on by 
his more bigoted son, Philip II., but it provoked the uprising 
of the people, and ended in the establishment of the Dutch 
Republic. 1 lie subdued the Lutheran league in the Schmal- 

1 Motley (I)ntrfi Itepulilir, I. SO) says: "Thousands and tons of thousands 
of virtuous, well-disposed men and women, who had as little sympathy with 
anahaptistical as with Human depravity, were butchered in cold blood, under 
the sanguinary rule, of Charles, in tin- Netherlands. In !.">:;:;, Queen Dowager 
Mary i. f Hungary, sister of the Kmperor, Ilegent of the provinces, the Chris 
tian widow 1 admired by Erasmus, wrote to her brother, that in her opinion, 
all heretics, whether repentant or not, should be prosecuted with such sever 
ity as that error might be at once extinguished, care being only taken that 
the provinces were not entirely depopulated. With this humane limitation, 
the Christian widow cheerfully set herself to superintend as foul and 
wholesale a system of murder as was ever organized. In l."i:>.">, an imperial 
edict was issued at Brussels, condemning all heretics to death; repentant 
males to be executed with the sword, repentant females to be buried alive, 
the obstinate, of both sexes, to be burned. This and similar edicts were the 
law of the land for twenty years, and rigidly enforced." 


kaldiun war; pale as death, but trusting in God, lie rushed 
into the hottest of the fight at Miihlberg, and greeted the 
decisive victory of 1547 with the words: "I came, I saw, 
and God conquered." - 1 But the height of his power was the 
beginning of his decline. The same Saxon Elector, Moritz, 
who had aided him against the Protestant princes, turned 
against him in 1552, and secured in the treaty of Passau, 
for the first time, some degree of legal toleration to the 
Lutherans in Germany. 

But while Charles was a strict Roman Catholic from the 
beginning to the end of his life, he was, nevertheless, by no 
means a blind and slavish papist. Like his predecessors on 
the German throne, he maintained the dignity and the sove 
reignty of the state against the claims of hierarchical suprem 
acy, lie hated the French, or neutral, politics of the papal 
court. His troops even captured Rome, and imprisoned 
Clement VII., who had formed a league with Francis I. 
against him (1527). lie quarreled with Pope Paul III., who 
in turn severely protested against his tolerant or hesitating 
policy towards the Protestants in Germany. He says, in his 
Autobiography, 2 that u the Pope s emissaries, and some eccle 
siastics, were incessantly endeavoring to induce him to take 
up arms against the Protestants (tomar as armas contra os 
IJrotestantes)" but that he " hesitated on account of the 
greatness and difficulty of such an enterprise." 

Moreover, Charles had a certain zeal for a limited reforma 
tion of church discipline on the basis of the Catholic doctrine 
and the papal hierarchy. He repeatedly urged a general 
council, against the dilatory policy of the Popes, and ex 
horted Protestants and Catholics alike to submit to its 

1 " Vine, y v>, y Dios -cencio" But it was hardly a battle. Ianke (vol. 
IV. :>77): " E* war ktine tichhtcht, sondcrn tin Ansprenyen auf dcr tinen, 
tin Auxeinandcrstieben auf der anderen Seite ,* in einem Augenblicke war 
ailex vollcndct." He says of the Emperor (p. 870): " Wie tin ti 
Ltictmaiu, wie tin Gespcntst ruckle er yeyen sie [die Protcstantcn] an." 

2 Ch. VI., in Simpson s translation, p. 91 sq. 


decisions ;is final. Speaking of the Diet of Augsburg, held 
in 15 JO, he says that he "asked his Holiness to convoke and 
assemble a general council, as most important and necessary 
to remedy what was taking place in Germany, and the errors 
which were being propagated throughout Christendom." l 
This was likewise consistent with Spanish tradition. Isa 
bella the Catholic, and Cardinal Ximenes, had endeavored to 
reform the clergy and monks in Spain. 2 

This Roman -Catholic reformation was effected by the 
Council of Trent, but turned out to be a papal counter-ref 
ormation, and a weapon against Protestantism in the hands 
of the Spanish order of the Jesuits. 

T/te Emperor and the Reformer. 

Charles and Luther saw each other once, and only once, 
at the Diet of Worms. The Emperor was disgusted with 
the monk who dared to set his private judgment and eon- 
science against the time-honored creed of Christendom, and 
declared that he would never make him a heretic, lint Lu 
ther wrote him a respectful letter of thanks for his safe- 
conduct. 3 

Twentv years later, after his victory over John Frederick 
of Saxony at Miihlberg on the Elbe (April :U, 1547), Charles 
Stood on the grave of Luther in the castle church of Witten 
berg, and was advised by the bloodthirsty Duke of Aha to 

1 Autobiography, p. 10. On p. To sq |. he complains of Clement VII. and 
Paul III. ,011 account of their violation of promise to ( (invoke such a council. 
He docs not conceal his hatred of Paul 111. 

2 Comp. Maurenhrechor, iJlc Klrclu iirfformntlon in Spanicn, in his 
"Studien unil Ski/" pp. 1-10, and his V, >/,/,/,/, ,/,,- k<ithnl ,s,-h ,i 
Reformation (Nonllingen, Is**)), vol. I., pp. .>!- >">. Maurenhrt cher shows 
that then- \vi-rc two reformation-currents in the sixteenth century, one pro 
ceeding from Spain, and led hy Charles V., which aimed at a restoration of 
the mediaeval Church in its purity and ijlory; the other proceeding from 
Germany, and embodied in Luther, which aimed at an emancipation of 
the human mind fim the authority of Home, and at a recon.structioii of the 
Church on the inner religiosity of the individual. 

April L s, i:,iM; in De Wette, I. 


dig up and burn the bones of the arch-heretic, and to scatter 
the ashes to the winds of heaven ; but he declined with the 
noble words : " I make war on the living, not on the dead." 
This was his nearest approach to religious toleration. But 
the interesting incident is not sufficiently authenticated. 1 

For twenty-six years the Emperor and the Reformer stood 
at the head of Germany, the one as a political, the other as a 
religious, leader ; working in opposite directions, the one 
for the preservation of the old, the other for the creation of 
the new, order of things. The one had the army and treas 
ure of a vast empire at his command ; the other had nothing 
but his faith and pen, and yet made a far deeper and more 
lasting impression on his and on future ages. Luther died 
peacefully in his birthplace, trusting in the merits of Christ, 
and commending his soul to the God who redeemed him. 
Ten years later Charles ended his life as a monk in Spain, 
holding a burning candle in the right hand, and pressing 
with the left the crucifix to his lips, while the Archbishop of 
Toledo intoned the Psalm De Profundis. The last word 
of the dying Emperor w r as " Jesus." 

52. The Abdication of Charles, and his Cloister Life. 

The abdication of Charles, and his subsequent cloister life, 
have a considerable interest for ecclesiastical as well as gen 
eral history, and may by anticipation be briefly noted in this 

In the year 305, the last of the imperial persecutors of 
Christianity, who was born a slave and reached his power 
by military achievements, voluntarily resigned the throne of 
the Cojsars, and retired for the remaining eight years of his 

1 In his Autobiography (ch. X., 151 sqq.) Charles speaks of the siege and 
capitulation of Wittenberg, but says nothing of a visit to Luther s grave, 
nor does he even mention his name. I looked in vain for an allusion to the 
fact in Slcidan, and Lindner (in his extensive Appendix to Seekendorf. from 
154(5 to 1555). R anke ignores it, though he is very full oil this chapter in 
Charles s history (vol. IV. 378 sqq.). 


life to his native Salona in Dalmatia to raise cabbages. In 
the year 1555 (Oct. 25), Charles V., who was born an heir 
of three kingdoms, wearied of the race of politics, diplomacy, 
and war, defeated by the treason of Moritz, and tormented 
by gout, abdicated his crown to live and die like an humble 

The abdication of Charles took place in the royal palace 
at Brussels, in the same hall in which, forty years before, he 
had been declared of age, and had assumed the reign of Bra 
bant. He was dressed in mourning for his unfortunate 
mother, and wore only one ornament, the superb collar of 
the Golden Fleece. He looked grave, solemn, pale, broken : 
he entered leaning on a staff with one hand, and on the arm 
of William of Orange with the other; behind him came 
Philip II., his son and heir, small, meager, timid, but mag 
nificently dressed, a momentous association with the two 
youthful princes who were to be afterwards arrayed in 
deadly conflict for the emancipation of the Netherlands from 
the yoke of Spanish tyranny and bigotry. 1 

The Emperor rose from the throne, and with his right 
hand resting on the shoulder of the Prince of Orange, who 
was one day to become the most formidable enemy of his 
house, and holding a paper in the other hand, he addressed 
his farewell in French before the members of the royal 
family, the nobility of the Netherlands, the Knights of the 
Golden Fleece, the royal counselors, and the great officers 
of the household. He assured them that he i,.id done his 
duty to the best of his ability, mindful of his dear native 
land, and especially of the interests of Christianity against 

"/;/;? Moment roll Srhirksal mid Znknnft ! " says Ilanke (V. 1". ")). "7><i 
der viachtiye Kaincr, der liixlii-r dif tirxm-n Anyelcyenhciten d<r \\ <!t 

tion, die ihn iiiHyuh, niilnn cr -,-1 w/// </. \efn~n Hun i-rxrhii iu-n (!!< Miinncr, 
denen <// Znknnft /cAo/ /e, /*///////> //. and // I rinz von Ornnirn, in 
dcnrn xi< h dii hridi-n entficf/rniienftzlfn Dinctiuncn rejtrascntirten, die 
fortan inn \Veltherr8chaft kdnn>jcn ttolltcn." 


infidels and heretics. lie had shrunk from no toil ; but a 
cruel malady now deprived him of strength to endure the 
cares of government, and this was his only motive for carry 
ing out a long-cherished wish of resigning the scepter. lie 
exhorted them above all things to maintain the purity of the 
faith. lie had committed many errors, but only from igno 
rance, and begged pardon if he had wronged any one. 

He then resigned the crown of the Netherlands to his son 
Philip with the exhortation, "Fear God: live justly; re 
spect the laws; above all, cherish the interests of religion." 

Exhausted, and pale as a corpse, he fell back upon his 
seat amid the tears and sobs of the assembly. 1 

On the IGth of January, 155G, he executed the deeds by 
which he ceded the sovereignty of Castile and Aragon, with 
their dependencies, to Philip. His last act was to resign the 
crown of Germany into the hands of his brother Ferdinand; 
but, as affairs move slowly in that country, the resignation 
was not finally acted on till Feb. 28, 1558, at the Diet at 
Frankfurt. 2 

His Retirement to Yuste. 

On the 17th of September Charles sailed from the harbor 
of Flushing for Spain with a fleet of fifty-six sails, his two 
sisters (Mary, formerly queen of Hungary, and regent of 
the Low Countries, and Eleanor, the widow of King Francis 
of France), and a hundred and fifty select persons of the 
imperial household. 

After a boisterous voyage, and a tedious land-journey, he 
arrived, Feb. 3, 1557, at the Convent of St. Gerome in Yuste, 
which he had previously selected for his retreat. 

The resolution to exchange the splendors of the world for 
monastic seclusion was not uncommon among the rulers and 

1 Sandoval, II. 507 sqq. ; Gaehart, Analcctes 1>f>1<ii<jurf<, 87: Preseott, 
Pli iUit UK- Si-cowl, I. 10 sqq.; Ranke, V. 20:} sqq. Prescott calls this abdica 
tion otic of tlic most remarkable scenes in history. 

- The negotiations with Ferdinand and the German Diet are detailed by 
ke, V. 207 sqq. 


nobles of Spain; and the rich convents of Montserrat and 
Poblet (now in ruins) had special accommodations for royal 
and princely guests. Charles had formed it during the life 
time of the Empress Isabella, and agreed with her that they 
would spend the rest of their days in neighboring convents, 
and be buried under the same altar. In l. Vl- he announced 
his intention to Francisco de Borgia; but the current of 
events involved him in a new and vain attempt to restore 
once more the Holy Roman Empire in the fullness of its 
power. Now his work was done, and he longed for rest. 
His resolution was strengthened by the desire to atone for 
sins of unchastity committed after the death of his wife. 1 

Yuste is situated in the mountainous province of Estrema- 
dura. about eight leagues from Plasencia and fifty leagues 
from Yalladolid (then the capital of Spain), in a well- 
watered valley and a salubrious climate, and was in every 
way well fitted for the wishes of the Emperor. 2 

Here he spent about eighteen months till his death, a re 
markable instance of the old adage, Sic transit yluria munJi. 

Hi Cloixter Life. 

Thorn is something grand and romantic, as well as sad and 
solemn, in the voluntary retirement of a monarch who had 
swayed a scepter of unlimited power over two hemispheres, 
and taken a leading part in the greatest events of an event- 

1 He regretted that, from regard to his son, he had not married again. 
Kanke, V. -J .tT. 

2 It is often miscalled Saint Ynste, or St. Justus, oven by Robertson in 
Book XII., KII-. ed. III. 2<U; AIIHT. ed. III. L"j5, etc.; and more recently 
by Dr. Stoimhton, > /*/;/*// Ili-jin-nn-rn. Loin!., lss:{, p. K .s. Vu^te is not 
named after a saint, but after a little stream. The convent was founded in 
14<M, and its proper name is Kl imnninff rin <lc Sun Gfroninm ilc Yttsti-. It 
lies on the route from Madrid to Lisbon, but is somewhat dillicult of access. 
It was sacked ami almost destroyed by the French soldiers under Soult. 
ISM. The bedroom <>f Charles, and an overgrown walnut-tree under whose 
shade he used to sit and muse, are still shown. Yuste is now in possession 
of the Duke of Montpensier. See descriptions in the works of Slirlinij, 
Miguel, and I rescott, above* ((noted, and by Ford in Murray s Handbook 
of Spain, I. 1^4 (sixth edition). 


ful century. There is also an idyllic charm in the combina 
tion of the innocent amusements of country life with the 
exercises of piety. 

The cloister life of Charles even more than his public life 
reveals his personal and religious character. It was repre 
sented by former historians as the life of a devout and philo 
sophic recluse, dead to the world and absorbed in preparation 
for the awful day of judgment; 1 but the authentic documents 
of Simancas, made known since 1844, correct and supple 
ment this view. 

He lived not in the convent with the monks, but in a 
special house with eight rooms built for him three years 
before. It opened into gardens alive with aromatic plants, 
flowers, orange, citron, and fig trees, and protected by high 
walls against intruders. From the window of his bedroom 
he could look into the chapel, and listen to the music and 
prayers of the friars, when unable to attend. lie retained 
over fifty servants, mostly Flemings, including a major- 
domo (who was a Spaniard), an almoner, a keeper of the 
wardrobe, a keeper of the jewels, chamberlains, secretaries, 
physician, confessor, two watchmakers, besides cooks, con 
fectioners, bakers, brewers, game-keepers, and numerous 
valets. 2 Some of them lived in a neighboring village, and 

1 By Samloval, Strada, and by his most elaborate historian, Dr. Robert 
son, who says: There he buried, in solitude and silence, his grandeur, his 
ambition, together with those projects which, during almost half a century, 
had alarmed and agit;> ed Europe, filling every kingdom in it, by turns, with 
the terror of his arms, and the dread of being subdued by his power." 
fSepulveda, who visited Charles in his retreat, seems to be the only early his 
torian who was aware of his deep interest in public affairs, so fully con 
firmed by the documents. 

2 "^IM.X den Leydten .seme.s Tcstamcntes lernt man die MityUcder dcr- 
selbcn kcnncn, eine yanze Anzahl Kammerdiener, bcsondcrc Dtencr fiir 
die Fruchtkammer, Obstkammer, Lichtbeschliesserei, Aufbewahrung dcr Kiel- 
dcr, dcr Juwelen, meist Niederldnder t jedoch unler eincni spanischen Haux- 
hofmeister, Loitis Quixada. Dcr Lcibarzt und cine Apothckc fchltcn nicht." 
Eanke, V. :>05. The codicil of Charles, executed a few days before his 
death, specifies the names and vocations of these servants. Sandoval and 
( radian give the list, the latter more correctly, especially in the orthography 
of Flemish names. 


would have preferred the gay society of Brussels to the dull 
monotony of solitude. lie was provided with canopies, 
Turkish carpets, velvet-lined arm-chairs, six cushions and a 
footstool for his gouty limbs, twenty-five suits of tapestry, six 
teen robes of silk and velvet lined with ermine or eider-down, 
twelve hangings of the finest black cloth, four large clocks 
of elaborate workmanship, and a number of pocket-watches. 
The silver furniture for his table and kitchen amouted to four 
teen thousand ounces in weight. The walls of his room were 
adorned with choice pictures, nine from the pencil of Titian 
(including four portraits of himself and one of the Empress). 
He had also a small library, mostly of devotional books. 1 

lie took exercise in his gardens, carried on a litter. lie 
constructed, with the aid of a skilled artisan, a little hand- 
mill for grinding wheat, puppet soldiers, clocks and watches, 
and endeavored in vain to make any two of them run exactly 
alike. The fresh mountain air and exercise invigorated his 
health, and he never felt better than in 1557. 

lie continued to take a lively interest in public affairs, and 
the events of the times. lie greeted with joy the victory 
of St. Quentin ; with partial dissatisfaction, the conclusion of 
peace with the Pope (whom he would have treated more 
severely) ; with regret, the loss of Calais; with alarm, the ad 
vance of the Turkish lleet to Spain, and the progress of the 
Lutheran heresy. He received regular dispatches and mes 
sengers, was constantly consulted by his son, and freely gave 
advice in the new complications with France, and especially 
also in financial matters. He received visits from his two 
sisters, the dowager queens of Hungary and 1- ranee, who 
had accompanied him to Spain, and from the nobles of the 
surrounding country; he kept up a constant correspondence 
with his daughter Joanna, regent of Castile, and with his 
sister, the regent of Portugal. 

1 Those ami other articles of furniture and outfit aro mentioned in the 
inventory. ISee Sterling, Pichot, and Prescott, I. 3U2 s<i<j. 


He maintained the stately Castilian etiquette of dining 
alone, though usually in the presence of his physician, secre 
tary, and confessor, who entertained him on natural history 
or other topics of interest. Only once he condescended to 
partake of a scanty meal with the friars. He could not con 
trol, even in these last years, his appetite for spiced capons, 
pickled sausages, and eel-pies, although his stomach refused 
to do duty, and caused him much suffering. 

But he tried to atone for this besetting sin by self-flagella 
tion, which he applied to his body so severely during Lent 
that the scourge was found stained with his blood. Philip 
cherished this precious memorial of his father s piety, and 
bequeathed it as an heirloom to his son. 1 

From the beginning of his retreat, and especially in the 
second year, Charles fulfilled his religious duties with scrupu 
lous conscientiousness, as far as his health would permit. 
He attended mass in the chapel, said his prayers, and listened 
to sermons and the reading of selections from the Fathers 
(Jerome, Augustin, Bernard), the Psalms, and the Epistles 
of Paul. He favored strict discipline among the friars, and 
gave orders that any woman who dared to approach within 
two bow-shots of the gate should receive a hundred stripes. 
lie enjoyed the visits of Francisco Borgia, Duke of Gandia, 
who had exchanged a brilliant position for membership in 
the Society of the Jesuits, and confirmed him in his convic 
tion that he had acted wisely in relinquishing the world. 
He wished to be prayed for only by his baptismal name, 
being no longer emperor or king. Every Thursday was for 
him a feast of Corpus Christi. 

He repeatedly celebrated the exequies of his parents, his 
wife, and a departed sister. 

Yea, according to credible contemporary testimony, he 
celebrated, in the presentiment of approaching death, his 
own funeral, around a huge catafalque erected in the dark 

1 Trescott, I.e., I. oil. 


chapel. Bearing a lighted taper, he mingled with his house 
hold and the monks in chanting the prayers for the departed, 
on the lonely passage to the invisible world, and concluded 
the doleful ceremony by handing the taper to the priest, in 
token of surrendering his spirit to Him who gave it. Accord 
ing to later accounts, the Emperor was laid alive in his coilin, 
and carried in solemn procession to the altar. 1 

This relish for funeral celebrations reveals a morbid trait in 
his piety. It reminds one of the insane devotion of his mother 
to the dead body of her husband, which she carried with her 
wherever she went. 

His Intolerance. 

We need not wonder that his bigotry increased toward the 
end of life. lie was not philosopher enough to learn a lesson 
of toleration (as Dr. Robertson imagines) from his inability 
to harmonize t\vo timepieces. On the contrary, he regretted 
his limited forbearance towards Luther and the German 
Protestants, who had defeated his plans five years before. 
They were now more hateful to him than ever. 

To his amazement, the same heretical opinions broke out 
in Yalladolid and Sevilla, at the very court and around the 
throne of Spain. Augustin Cazalla, 2 who had accompanied 

1 The story is told with its later embellishments by Robertson and many 
others. The papers of Simaneas, ami the private letters of the Emperor s 
major-domo ((^uixada) and physician, are silent on the subject; and hence 
Tomas (ronzalez. Minuet (is.">4 and ls">7), Jind Maurenbreeher ("Stuclien und 
Ski/./.cM," 1S74, p. l: .:. , note) reject the whole as a monkish fiction. Hut the 
main fact rests on the testimony of a Hieronymite monk of Yuste. who was 
present at the ceremony, and recorded the deep impression it made; and it is 
confirmed by Sandoval, who derived his report directly from Yuste. A fuller 
account is given by Siguenca, prior of the K-conal, in his general history of 
the Order of St. Jerome (H ,Oo); and by Strada, who wrote a generation later, 
and leaves the Emperor in a swoon upon the floor. Stirling, Pichot, Juste, 
Gachard (ls.V>), Prescott (/ /<//. //., Vol. I., :;-_ T S-H.). an. I Kanke (Vol. V.. 
3<K) si|.), accept the fact as told in its more simple form by the oldest witness. 
It is mute consistent with the character of Charles; for, as Prescott remarks 
(p. %}"2), " there was a taint of insanity in the royal blood of Castile." 

2 Commonly called Dr. Ca/alla. See on him Dr. Stoiighton, Tim Spanish 
Itcfvnnirx, p. ii<)4 sq. 


him as chaplain in the Smalkaldian war, and had preached 
before him at Yuste, professed Lutheran sentiments. Charles 
felt that Spain was in danger, and repeatedly urged the most 
vigorous measures for the extermination of heresy with fire 
and sword. " Tell the Grand Inquisitor, from me," he wrote 
to his daughter Joanna, the regent, on the 3d of May, 1558, 
" to be at his post, and to lay the ax at the root of the evil 
before it spreads farther. I rely on your zeal for bringing the 
guilty to punishment with all the severity which their crimes 
demand." In the last codicil to his will, he conjures his son 
Philip to cherish the Holy Inquisition as the best instrument 
for the suppression of heresy in his dominions. "So," he 
concludes, " shall you have my blessing, and the Lord shall 
prosper all your undertakings." 1 

Philip II., who inherited the vices but none of the virtues 
of his father, faithfully carried out this dying request, and by 
a terrible system of persecution crushed out every trace of 
evangelical Protestantism in Spain, and turned that beautiful 
country into a graveyard adorned by somber cathedrals, and 
disfigured by bull-rings. 

His Death. 

The Emperor s health failed rapidly in consequence of a 
new attack of gout, and the excessive heat of the summer, 
which cost the life of several of his Flemish companions. 
He died Sept. 21, 1558, a consistent Catholic as he had lived. 
A few of his spiritual and secular friends surrounded his 
death-bed. He confessed with deep contrition his sins ; 
prayed repeatedly for the unity of the Church ; received, 
kneeling in his bed, the holy communion and the extreme 
unction ; and placed his hope on the crucified Redeemer. 
The Archbishop of Toledo, Bartolom de Carranza, read the 
one hundred and thirtieth Psalm, and, holding up a cru 
cifix, said : " Behold Him who answers for all. There is no 
more sin ; all is forgiven ; " while another of his preachers 
1 Gaehart], II. 401. Ranke, V. 303. Prescott, I. 325 sq. 

52. HIS DEATH. 285 

commended him to the intercession of saints, namely, St. 
Matthew, on whose day lie was born, and St. Matthias, on 
whose day he was in a few moments to leave this world. 

"Thus," says Mignet, "the two doctrines which divided 
the world in the age of Charles V. were once more brought 
before him on the bed of death." 

It is an interesting fact, that the same archbishop who had 
taken a prominent part in the persecution of English Prot 
estants under Queen Mary, and who administered the last 
and truly evangelical comfort to the dying Emperor, became 
a victim of persecution, and that those very words of com 
fort were used by the Emperor s confessor as one of the 
grounds of the charge of heresy before the tribunal of the 
Spanish Inquisition. Bartolomd de Carranza was seven 
years imprisoned in Spain, then sent to Rome, lodged in the 
Castle of St. Angelo, after long delay found guilty of six 
teen Lutheranizing propositions in his writings, suspended 
from the exercise of his episcopal functions, and sentenced 
to be shut up for five years in a convent of his order. lie 
died sixteen days after the judgment, in the Convent Sopra 
Minerva, May 2, 157G, "declaring his innocence with tears 
in his eyes, and yet with strange inconsistency admitting the 
justice of his sentence. l 

In less than two months after the decease of the Emperor, 
Queen Mary, his cousin, and wife of his son, died, Nov. IT, 
1558, and was borne to her rest in Westminster Abbey. 
With her the Roman hierarchy collapsed, and the reformed 
religion, after five years of bloody persecution, was perma 
nently restored on the throne and in the Church of England. 
In view of this coincidence, we may well exclaim with 
Ranke, "How far do the thoughts of Divine Providence 
exceed the thoughts and purposes of men ! " 2 

1 His long trial is told by Prescott, Philip the Second, I. 337, 437 sqq.; 
and by Stou^hton, The Spanish Ittformers, pp. 1S5 sqq. 

2 D^utscht Gcscft., vol. V. 311. 


His Tomb. 

From Yuste the remains of the once mighty Emperor were 
removed in 1574 to their last resting-place under the altar 
of the cathedral of the Escorial. That gloomy structure, in 
a dreary mountain region some thirty miles north of Madrid, 
was built by his order as a royal burial-place (between 1503 
and 1584), and combines a palace, a monastery, a cathedral, 
and a tomb (called Pantheon). Philip II., "el Escorial- 
ense," spent there fourteen years, half king, half monk, 
boasting that he ruled the Old and New World from the foot 
of a mountain with two inches of paper. lie died, after 
long and intense suffering, Sept. 13, 1598, in a dark little 
room facing the altar of the church. 

Father and son are represented in gilt-bronze statues, 
opposite each other, in kneeling posture, looking to the high 
altar; Charles V., with his wife Isabella, his daughter Maria, 
and his sisters Eleonora and Maria; Philip II., with three of 
his wives, and his weak-minded and unfortunate son, Don 

The Escorial, like Spain itself, is only a shadow of the 
past, inhabited by the ghost of its founder, who entombed 
in it his own gloomy character. 1 

1 The convent was robbed of its richest treasures by the French invaders 
in 1808, and by the Carlists in 1837. Some of the finest pictures were re 
moved to the museum of Madrid. There still remains a considerable; library; 
the books are richly bound, but their gilt backs are turned inside. The Rev. 
Fritz Fliedner, an active and hopeful Protestant evangelist in Madrid, with 
whom I visited the Escorial in May, 1886, bought there the ruins of a house 
and garden, which was built and temporarily occupied by Philip II. (while 
the palace-monastery was in process of construction), and fitted it up for an 
orphan-home, in which day by day the Scriptures are read, and evangelical 
hyiims are sung, in the Spanish tongue. 

53. THE DIET OF WORMS. 1521. 287 

53. The Diet of Worms. 1521. 

I. Sources. Artn (t r^ .s ycsta; I). -V. Lntti. in Coinitiis Principum Il or- 

nutti i . Anno l"iiM. 4. Actu Ln1h> ri in Coinitiin Wormuthv ed. I nl- 
liriiriiix, Viteb. l.~>4o . These and other contemporary documents are re 
printed in the Jena ed. of Luther s Opera (l- r >~7), vol. II.; in WALCH S 
German -d., vols. XV., L UlS-ii: ;_>.">, and XXII., JO JO s<i(i. ; and the 
F.rlangen-Frankf. ed. of the ()j><r<i Lut., vol. VI. (1872); I cnnischte 
dentx<:lic ScliriJ ttn, vol. XII. (or Xiiimntl. U <rA.v, vol. LXIV., pub. 
1SV>), pp. :jVUNJ. FOHSTKMAXX: AYf.x Urknndi-nhui-h, 1S4 J, vol. I. 
Lt TIIKH S Letters to Spalatin, Cuspinianus, Lucas Cranach, C harles 
V.,ete., see in I)K WKTTK, I. "j^O sqq. SI ALATIX: Ann. Spalatin is 
also, according to Kostlin, the author of the contemporary pamphlet: 
Etl n-lif icundvrliche Jleiiwiye Ihindlnn j in I). If. Luther s > <u://<- <lnn:Ii 
yc!.itl!rfn> un<l icdflifftv Fit rat en dcs JtclrtCsj but Hrieger (in his " Zeit- 
schrift fiir Kirchencjesch.," Gotha, 1680, p. 462 sq|.) ascribes it to 
Iludolph von Watzdorf. 

On the Koman-C ath. side, CociiLAUS (who was present at Worms): PAL- 
I.AVK IM (who used the letters of Aleander); and especially the letters 
ami dispatches of AI.KAXDKK, now published as follows: JOIIAXN 
FKIKDKICII: Dff 1!< i<-h*tti>j zn \\ <>rinn im Jahr 1521. Nach den Britfen 
(/ .s jtiijuttUchen Xidttixx llicrunyinus Aleander. In the "Abhand- 
lunu en der Bayer. Akad.," vol. XI. Miinchen, ls"0. PIKTHO HALAX 
(II. ( ath. ): Muniinti utd liffnrnt. LutlK i anw ex tabulariis .S. Xi dis ae- 
crcti-*. \~> 2l-l~> 2~>. Katisb. Fasc. I., 1S&3. Contains Aleander s reports 
from the papal archives, and is one of the first fruits of the liberal policy 
of Lt-o XIII. in opening the literary treasures of the Vatican. Tm-:oi>. 
BiUK<Ji:ic (1 rof. of Ch. IIM. in Leipzig): Aleamler uml Lntln-r, 1521. 
l)ic r< rcullntan<Uyten Aleundfr-Depi Hchen nffmf Unterstichunycn il^cr 
d> n U nrmx r Ilf n-hstii i. 1 Abth. Gotha, 1884 (JJl. i pa-es). (Jives the 
Aleunder dispatches in Italian and Latin from a MS. in the library of 
Trent, and supplements and partly corrects, in the chronology, the edi 
tion of Balan. 

II. Special Treatises. BOYE: Luther zn Wnnns. Halle, 1817. ISiM. Zl.M- 

MKU: Lut/nr zn H"or///.x. Ileidelb. 1">J1. Tt /-< H.M ANN : Lnlftir in 
}\ t>r>nx. Darmstadt, 18(50. SOI.DAN: D<r li< i<-lista<j zu \\ unnn. 
Worms, ls(.}. Sri;nz: J)if Mdmicltthon- laid Luther-IIerberycn zu 
Frtinkfnrt-<i.-M. Frankf., 1S<51. Contains the reports of the Frankfurt 
delegate Fiirstenberg, and other documents. IlKXXKs(K. Cath.): Jf. 
Lntli i- x Anft-nthnlt in Wnrnm. Mainz, INK WALT/: Dvr \Vnrium-r 
Jti-irfintny nnd m-inr liczu-hnnycn zur ri j nnnntor. Bcweyuny, in the 
Forsclnuiiren -/AIT d-utschen (Jesch." (iottingen, l>t8, VIII. pp. 21-44. 
DAX. SCHKXKEL: Lntln-r in ]\ vrin#. Ellterfeld, INTO. jfL. KOSTLIX: 
n Hide in Wvt ina am 18. April, 1541. II. tile, 1874 (the best on 


Luther s famous declaration). MAUREXBRECIIER: Dcr Wormser Reichs- 
tay von 1521, in his " Stuclien und Skizzen zur Gesch. der Reform. Zeit," 
Leipzig, 1874 (pp. 241-275); also in his Gesch. der kathol. Reformation, 
Nordlingen, 1880, vol. I., pp. 181-201. KARL JAXSEX (not to be con 
founded with the Rom.-Cath. Janssen): Alcander am Reichstaye zu 
Worms, 1521. Kiel, 1883 (72 pages). Corrects Friedrich s text of Ale- 
ander s letters. Til. KOLDE: Luther und der Reichstag zu Worms. 2d 
ed. Halle, 1883. BRIEGER: Neue Mittheilungen iiber L. in Wnr)ns. 
Program to the Luther jubilee, Marburg, 1883 (a critique of Balan s 
Monument a). KALKOFF: Germ, transl. of the Aleancler Dispatches, 
Halle, 1S80. ELTER: Luther u. der Wormier Iteichxtay. Bonn, 1886. 
III. RAXKE, I. 311-343. GIESELER, IV. 56-58 (Am. ed.). MERLE p Aun., 
Bk. VII. chs. I.-XI. IlAGEXBAcii, III. 103-109. G. P. FISHER, pp. 
108-111. KOSTLIX, chs. XVII. and XVIII. (I. 411-406). KOLDE, I. 
325 sqq. JAXSSEX (K. Cath.), II. 131-100. G. WEBER: Das Zt-italter 
der Rfformation (vol. X. of his Weltyeschichtc), Leipzig, 1886, pp. 102- 
178. BAUMGARTEX: Gesch. Karls V. Leipzig, 1885, vol. I. 379-400. 

On the 28th of January, 1521, Charles V. opened his first 
Diet at Worms. This was a free imperial city on the left 
bank of the Rhine, in the present grand-duchy of Hesse. 1 It 
is famous in German song as the scene of the Niebelungerilied, 
which opens with King Giinther of Worms and his sister 
Chriemhild, the world s wonder for grace and beauty. It is 
equally famous in ecclesiastical history for " the Concordat 
of Worms/ which brought to an end the long contest be 
tween the Emperor and the Pope about investiture (Sept. 23, 
1122). But its greatest fame the city acquired by Luther s 
heroic stand on the word of God and the rights of conscience, 
which made the Diet of 1521 one of the most important in 
the history of German Diets. After that event two confer 
ences of Protestant and Roman-Catholic leaders were held 
in Worms, to heal the breach of the Reformation, one in 
1541, and one in 1557 ; but both failed of their object. In 

1 Worms is 26 miles S. S. E. of Mainz (Mayence or Mentz, the ancient 
Moguntiaoum. the capital of Rhenish Hesse since 1815), and has now over 
20,000 inhabitants, ahout one-half of them Protestants, but in the beginning 
of the seventeenth century it had 70,000. It was almost destroyed under 
Louis XIV. (1083). The favorite German wine, Liebfrauenmilch, is cultivated 
in its neighborhood. H. Boos, L rkundcnbuch der Stadt Worms, Berlin, IbbC. 

53. THE DIET OF WORMS. 1521. 289 

1808 (June 25) a splendid monument to Luther and his 
fellow-laborers by Rietschel was erected at Worms, and dedi 
cated with great national enthusiasm. 1 

The religious question threw all the political and financial 
questions into the background, and absorbed the attention 
of the public mind. 

At the very beginning of the Diet a new papal brief called 
upon the Emperor to give, by an imperial edict, legal force 
to the bull of January 3, by which Luther was finally excom 
municated, and his books condemned to the flames. The 
Pope urged him to prove his zeal for the unity of the Church. 
God had girded him with supreme earthly power, that he 
might use it against heretics who were much worse than 
infidels.- On Maundy Thursday, March 28, the Pope, in 
proclaiming the terrible bull In Ccena Domini, which is 
annually read at Rome, expressly condemned, among other 
heretics, Martin Luther by name with all his adherents. 
This was the third or fourth excommunication, but produced 
little e fleet. 3 

The Pope was ably represented by two Italian legates. 
who were afterwards created cardinals, Marino Caracciolo 
(1459-1538) for the political a flairs, and Jerome Aleander 
(14801542) for the ecclesiastical interests. Aleander was 
at that time librarian of the Vatican, and enjoyed great repu 
tation as a Greek scholar. lie had lectured at Paris before 
two thousand hearers of all classes. He stood in friendly 

1 See description of the celebration by Dr. Friedrieh Eich, Cf 

"Worms. l^N; and bis book on the controversy about the locality of tin- 
Diet, In irflrhein Locnle xtnnd Luther zn \\ <>nnn tor ]\tiinrr und Jleic/t t 
Leipzig. isr,:j. II. .!<!. Irs for the HiKhofslnif (against the llnthhnns). 

2 Malta <lct< r!or<s h<i r<V/ ro.x." The new papal bull of condemnation, 
together with a brief to the Emperor, arrived in Worms the 10th of February. 
Aleander addressed the Diet three days after, on Ash Wednesday, llankc, 
L 32f>. K",tlin. I., 4> sq. 

8 Luther published this bull afterwards with biting, abusive, and con 
temptuous comments, under the title. />/> llnllit nun Aliemlfrrwn <le* allir- 
heiliiiHtrn lln-rn, <lex / ///I.H/.S. In Waldi XV. lilL T sij|. Merle d Aubigne 
gives characteristic extracts, Bk. VII. ch. ">. 


relations to Erasmus; but when the latter showed sympathy 
with the Reformation, he denounced him as the chief founder 
of the Lutheran heresy. He was an intense papist, and 
skilled in all the arts of diplomacy. His religious wants 
were not very pressing. During the Diet of Worms he 
scarcely found time, in the holy week, "to occupy himself a 
little with Christ and his conscience. His sole object was 
to maintain the power of the Pope, and to annihilate the new 
heresy. In his letters he calls Luther a fool, a dog, a basi 
lisk, a ribald. He urged everywhere the wholesale burning 
of his books. 1 He employed argument, persuasion, promises, 
threats, spies, and bribes. He complained that he could not 
get money enough from Rome for greedy officials. He 
labored day and night with the Emperor, his confessor, and 
the members of the privy council. He played on their fears 
of a popular revolution, and reminded them of the example 
of the Bohemians, the worst and most troublesome of here 
tics. He did not shrink from the terrible threat, "If ye Ger 
mans who pay least into the Pope s treasury shake off his 
yoke, we shall take care that ye mutually kill yourselves, 
and wade in your own blood." He addressed the Diet, 
Feb. 13, in a speech of three hours, and contended that 
Luther s final condemnation left no room for a further hear 
ing of the heretic, but imposed upon the Emperor and the 
Estates the simple duty to execute the requirements of the 
papal bull. 

The Emperor hesitated between his religious impulses 
which were decidedly Roman Catholic, though with a lean 
ing towards disciplinary reform through a council and 
political considerations which demanded caution and forbear 
ance. He had already taken lessons in the art of dissimu- 

1 Janssen, who praises him very highly, remarks (II. 144): " Um der 
Hdresie Einlialt zu than, hiclt Aleander die Verbrcnmnnj der Intherischen 
B ticker fur ein itbcraus geeignetes Mittcl. But I can not see why he says 
(p. 142) that Aleander prided himself on being "a German." Aleander was 
born in Italy, hated the Germans, and died in Home. 

50. THE DIRT OF WORMS. 1521. 291 

latinn, which was deemed essential to a ruler in those days. 
He had to respect the wishes of the Estates, and could not 
act without their consent. Public sentiment was divided, 
and there was a possibility of utilizing the dissatisfaction 
with Rome for his interest. lie was displeased with Leo 
for favoring the election of Francis, and trying to abridge 
the powers of the Spanish Inquisition ; and yet he felt anx 
ious to secure his support in the impending struggle with 
France, and the Pope met him half-way by recalling his steps 
against the Inquisition. lie owed a debt of gratitude to the 
Elector Frederick, and had written to him, Nov. -8, 1">20, 
to bring Luther to Worms, that he might have a hearing 
before learned men; but the Elector declined the offer, fear 
ing the result. On the 17th of December, the Emperor 
advised him to keep Luther at Wittenberg, as he had been 
condemned at Rome. 

At first he inclined to severe measures, and laid the draft 
of an edict before the Diet whereby the bull of excommuni 
cation should be legally enforced throughout all Germany. 
But this was resisted by the Estates, and other influences 
were brought to bear upon him. Then lie tried indirectly, 
and in a private wav, a compromise; through his confessor, 
John (ilapin, a Franciscan friar, who professed some svm- 
pathy with reform, and respect for Luther s talent and /eal. 
He held several interviews with Dr. Briick (Pontanus), the 
Chancellor of the Elector Frederick. lie assured him of 
great friendship, and proposed that he should induce Luther 
to disown or to retract the book on the "Babylonian Cap 
tivity," which was detestable ; in this case, his other writings, 
which contained so much that is good, would bear fruit to 
the Church, and Luther might en-operate with the Emperor 
in the work of a true (that is, Spanish) reformation of eccle 
siastical abuses. We have no right to doubt his sincerity 
any more than that of the like-minded Hadrian YL. the 
teacher of Charles. But the Elector would not listen to 


such a proposal, and refused a private audience to Glapio. 
His conference with Hutten and Sickingen on the Ebern- 
burg was equally unsuccessful. 1 

The Estates were in partial sympathy with the Reforma 
tion, not from doctrinal and religious, but from political and 
patriotic motives ; they repeated the old one hundred and one 
gravamina against the tyranny and extortions of the Roman 
See 2 (similar to the charges in Luther s Address to the Ger 
man Nobility), and resisted a condemnation of Luther with 
out giving him a hearing. Even his greatest enemy, Duke 
George of Saxony, declared that the Church suffered most 
from the immorality of the clergy, and that a general refor 
mation was most necessary, which could be best secured by 
a general council. 

During the Diet, Ulrich von Hutten exerted all his power 
of invective against the Pope and for Luther. lie was har 
bored at Ebernburg, a few leagues from Worms, with his friend, 
the valorous Francis of Sickingen. He poured contempt and 
ridicule on the speech of Aleander, and even attempted to 
catcli him and Caracciolo by force. 3 But he and Sickingen 
favored, at the same time, the cause of the young Emperor, 
from whom they expected great things, and wished to bring 
about an anti-papal revolution with his aid. Hutten called 
upon him to dismiss his clerical counsellors, to stand on his 
own dignity, to give Luther a hearing, and to build up a 
free Germany. Freedom was now in the air, and all men 

1 See Briick s conversations with Glapio in Forstemann, I., pp. 53, 54. 
Erasmus and Hutten regarded him as a crafty hypocrite, who wished to ruin 
Luther. iStrauss agrees, Ulrich von Unit en, p. 405. But Maurenbreeher, 
(Sttnlicn, etc., pp. 258 sqq., and Gcttch. dcr hath. 7W., I. 387 sqq.) thinks that 
Glapio presented the program of the imperial policy of reform. Janssen, 
II., 35:) sq., seems to be of the same opinion. 

~ See the list in YValeh, XV., 205S sqq. 

3 Luther, in a letter to Spalatin (Xov. 23, 1520, in De Wette I. 523), in a 
moment of indignation expressed a wish that Ilutten might have intercepted 
(iithuiin IXTEKCKPISSET) the legates, but not murdered, as Romanists 
(Janssen, twice, II. 1U4, 143) misinterpret it. See Kostlin, I. 411, and note 
on p. 707. 

53. THE DIET OF WORMS. 1521. 293 

of intelligence longed for a new and better order of 
things. 1 

Aleander was scarcely safe on the street after his speech 
of February 13. He reported to his master, that for nine- 
tenths of the Germans the name of Luther was a war-cry, 
and that the last tenth screamed "Death to the court of 
Koine!" Cochkeus, who was in Worms as the theological 
adviser of the Archbishop of Troves, feared a popular upris 
ing against the clergy. 

Luther was the hero of the day, and called a new Moses, a 
second Paul. His tracts and picture, surrounded by a halo 
of glory, were freely circulated in Worms. 2 

At last Charles thought it most prudent to disregard the 
demand of the Pope. In an official letter of March 0, he 
cited Luther to appear before the Diet within twenty-one 
days under the sure protection of the Empire. The Elector 
Frederick, Duke George of Saxony, and the Landgrave of 
Hesse, added letters of safe-conduct through their respective 
territories. 3 

Aleunder now endeavored to make the appearance of 
Luther as harmless as possible, and succeeded in preventing 
any diseussion with him. The heretic was simply to recant, 
or, in case of refusal, to suiler the penalties of excommuni 

1 Son Aloander s dispatches in HriPijor, I.e. I. pp. 110 sqq.; Strauss, I lrv-h 
ron flatten, 4th ed., pp. :, .! > sqq. ; and L llmann, Franz ro;i Hickimjcii (Leip 
zig, 1*7-J). 

Aleander reports (April 1:>) that Luther was painted with the Holy 
Spirit over his head (d K}>irito x<mt<t xoprd il co/m, come lo dcpinyono). 
Brie-er, I. r.v.i. 

8 The letters of safe-oonduct are. printed in Waleh, XV., lil2 J-iMliT, and 
Forst email n , JNV/^.s I rkuntlcnhuch, I., (\l sq. In the imperial letter signed 
bj* Alhert, Klertor and Arehhishop of Mayenre and Chancellor of the Ein- 
pire, Luther is addressed ;is " honorahh*. well-holovcd, pious " (Elirnainer, 
Gflir!,t<r. An<liicl,ti i -r ; in the Latin copy, HvnorabiUa, Dilcctc, Devote), 
much to the chagrin of the Humanists. 


54. Luther s Journey to Worms. 
" Monchlein, Monchlein, du yehest einen schwcrcn Gang." 

Luther, from the first intimation of a summons by the Em 
peror, regarded it as a call from God, and declared his deter 
mination to go to Worms, though he should be carried there 
sick, and at the risk of his life. His motive was not to gratify 
an unholy ambition, but to bear witness to the truth. He 
well knew the tragic fate which overtook Hus at Constance 
notwithstanding the safe-conduct, but his faith inspired him 
with fearless courage. " You may expect every thing from 
me," he wrote to Spalatin, "except fear or recantation. I 
shall not flee, still less recant. May the Lord Jesus 
strengthen me." l 


He shared for a while the hope of Hutten and Sickingen, 
that the young Emperor would give him at least fair play, 
and renew the old conflict of Germany with Rome ; but he 
was doomed to disappointment. 

While the negotiations in Worms were going on, he used 
incessantly his voice and his pen, and alternated between 
devotional and controversial exercises. He often preached 
twice a day, wrote commentaries on Genesis, the Psalms, and 
the Magnificat (the last he finished in March), and published 
the first part of his Postil (Sermons on the Gospels and 
Epistles), a defense of his propositions condemned by Rome, 
and fierce polemical books against Hieronymus Emser, Am 
brose Catharinus, and other papal opponents. 

Emser, a learned Romanist, and secretary of Duke George 
of Saxony, had first attacked Luther after the Leipzig dispu 
tation, at which he was present. A bitter controversy fol 
lowed, in which both forgot dignity and charity. Luther 

1 Letter of Doe. 21, 1520 (Do Wctte, L, 534, 530): " Efjo mv>, .si rocatus 
fucro, quantum per me stabit, vcl ceyrotus (tdvehur, si sunns venire non pots- 
sctn. Nctjne cnini dttbltari fas est, u Domino me vocari, si Cce.sar vocut. 
. . . Qmn m d<> me iirwsunxix prater fii jam et pidinodiam : fuyere ipse nolo, 
recantare multo minus. Ita me comfortet Dominus JOHUS." 


called Emser " the Gout of Leipzig " (in reference to the 
escutcheon of his family), and Emser called Luther in turn 
"the Capricorn of Wittenberg." Luther s Antwort auf <l<tx 
iiberchrixtlichei tibergeiztliclie, und Uberkunstliche Buch Buck 
Em*cr#i appeared in March, 1521, and defends his doctrine 
of the general priesthood of believers. 1 Emser afterwards 
severely criticised Luther s translation of the Bible, and 
published his own version of the New Testament shortly 
before his death (1527). 

Catharinus, 2 an eminent Dominican at Rome, had attacked 
Luther toward the end of December, 1520. Luther in his 
Latin reply tried to prove from Dan. 8:25 sqq. ; 2 Thess. 
2:osqq.; 2 Tim. 4: 3 sqq.; 2 Pet. 2:1 sqq.; and the Epistle 
of Jude, that popery was the Antichrist predicted in the 
Scriptures, and would soon be annihilated by the Lord him 
self at his second coming, which he thought to be near at 

It is astonishing that in the midst of the war of theological 
passions, he could prepare such devotional books as his com 
mentaries and sermons, which are full of faith and practical 
comfort. lie lived and moved in the heart of the Scriptures; 
and this was the secret of his strength and success. 

On the second of April, Luther left Wittenberg, accom 
panied by Amsdorf, his friend and colleague, Peter Swaven, 
a Danish student, and Johann Pezensteiner, an Augustinian 
brother. Thus the faculty, the students, and his monastic 
order were represented. Thev rode in an open farmer s 
wagon, provided by the magistrate of the city. The impe 
rial herald in his coat-of-arms preceded on horseback. Me- 
lanchthon wished to accompany his friend, but he was needed 
at home. * k lf I do not return," said Luther in taking leave 

1 On the Knisor controversy sec Erl. Frkf. <<!., vol. XXVII. 

2 His proper name was Lancelot Politl. See Lammcr, Vortrdlcntinischu 
Tficol x/ii-, j. iil, ami Ilurkhanlt, Liitltn- * Itri<jice<-hm l, p. :)S. Luther CJ-lls 
him " hixiilsnx <t xtolidus Tliomista,^ in a, letter to bpalutin, March 7, lOiil 
(Do Wi-tte, I. 57<). 


of him, "and my enemies murder me, I conjure thee, dear 
brother, to persevere in teaching the truth. Do my work 
during my absence : you can do it better than I. If you 
remain, I can well be spared. In thee the Lord has a more 
learned champion." 

At Weimar, Justus Jonas joined the company. lie was 
at that time professor and canon at Erfurt. In June of the 
same year he moved to Wittenberg as professor of church 
law and provost, and became one of the most intimate friends 
and co-workers of Luther. He accompanied him on his last 
journey to Eisleben, and left us a description of his clos 
ing days. He translated several of his and Melanchthon s 

The journey to Worms resembled a march of triumph, but 
clouded with warnings of friends and threats of foes. In 
Leipzig, Luther was honorably received by the magistrate, 
notwithstanding his enemies in the University. In Thu- 
ringia, the people rushed to see the man who had dared to 
defy the Pope and all the world. 

At Erfurt, where he had studied law and passed three 
years in a monastic cell, he was enthusiastically saluted, and 
treated as " the hero of the gospel." Before he reached the 
city, a large procession of professors and students of his alma 
mater, headed by his friends Crotus the rector, and Eoban 
the Latin poet, met him. Everybody rushed to see the pro 
cession. The streets, the walls, and roofs were covered with 
people, who almost worshiped Luther as a wonder-working 
saint. The magistrate gave him a banquet, and overwhelmed 
him with demonstrations of honor. He lodged in the Au- 
gustinian convent with his friend Lange. On Sunday, April 
7, he preached on his favorite doctrine, salvation by faith in 
Jesus Christ, and against the intolerable yoke of popery. 
Eoban, who heard him, reports that he melted the hearts 
as the vernal sun melts the snow, and that neither Demos 
thenes nor Cicero nor Paul so stirred their audiences as 


Luther s sermon stirred the people on the shores of the 
Gera. 1 

During the sermon a crash in the balconies of the crowded 
church scared the hearers, who rushed to the door; but Lu 
ther allayed the panic by raising his hand, and assuring them 
that it was only a wicked sport of the Devil. 2 

In Gotha and Eisenach ho preached likewise to crowded 
houses. At Eisenach he fell sick, and was bled; but a cor 
dial and good sleep restored him sufficiently to proceed on 
the next day. lie ascribed the sickness to the Devil, the 
recovery to God. In the inns, he used to take up his lute, 
and to refresh himself with music. 

He arrived at Frankfurt, completely exhausted, on Sun 
day, April 14. On Monday he visited the high school of 
William Xesse, blessed the children and exhorted them "to 
be diligent in reading the Scriptures and investigating the 
truth. He also became acquainted with a noble- patrician 
family, von Holzhausen, who took an active part in the sub 
sequent introduction of the Reformation in that city. 3 

As he proceeded, the danger increased, and with it his 
courage. Before he left Wittenberg, the Emperor had issued 

1 A full (Inscription of the reception at Erfurt, with extracts from the 
speech of Ootus and the poems of Koban, is given by Professor Kampschulte 
(a liberal Catholic historian), in his valuable monograph, I)i< Cuici rxitnt 
Erfurt, vol. II. D5-KH). "It seems," he says, "that the nation at this 
moment \visheil to m;ike every effort to assure Luther of his vocation. The 
glorifications which he received from the -Jd to the Kith of April no doubt 
contributed much to fill him with that self-confidence which he manifested 
in the decisive hour. Nowhere was he received more splendidly than at 

2 " Sc ulatill" he said, " hVV.s Vnlk, en ixt <lrr Tnifcl. <l<r rirfitet *o cine 
Spieyelfechtfirei mi ; xr nl xtill, <* l/nt k< inc AW//." Some of his indiscreet 
admirers called this victory over the imaginary Devil the first miracle of Lu 
ther. The second miracle, they thought, he performed at (Jotha, where the 
Devil playnl a similar trick in the church, and met with the same defeat. 

8 His brief sojourn at Frankfurt, and his contact with the Holzhausen 
family, is made the subject of :in interesting historical novel: Unman ran 
Uolzhnuxen. Kine Frankfurter Pntrizlcrncurhirhtf nn/ h Fuinilienpnpleren 
erziifilt rnu ^f. K. [Muri t Ki-innmn<-h> /]. Bielefeld and Leip/ig, I860. Sec 
especially chap. XX., pp. 2"/J, s<j<j. 


an edict ordering all his books to be seized, and forbidding 
their sale. 1 The herald informed him of it already at Wei 
mar, and asked him, " Herr Doctor, will ye proceed?" He 
replied, " Yes." The edict was placarded in all the cities. 
Spalatin, who knew the critical situation, warned him by spe 
cial messenger, in the name of the Elector his patron, not 
to come to Worms, lest he might suffer the fate of Hus. 2 

Luther comforted his timid friends with the words : 
Though Hus was burned, the truth was not burned, and 
Christ still lives. He wrote to Spalatin from Frankfurt, that 
he had been unwell ever since he left Eisenach, and had 
heard of the Emperor s edict, but that he would go to Worms 
in spite of all the gates of hell and the evil spirits in the 
air. 3 The day after, he sent him from Oppenheim (between 
Mainz and Worms) the famous words : 

u I shall go to Worms, though there were as many devils 
there as tiles on the roofs." 4 

A few days before his death at Eisleben, he thus described 

1 The edict is dated March 10. See Burkliardt, Luther s Briefwcchsel 
(1800), p. 38, who refers to Spalatin s MS. Seidemann dates the letter from 
March 2. Kanke, in the sixth ed. (1881), I. 333, says that it was published 
March 27, on the doors of the churches at Worms. Luther speaks of it in 
his Eisleben report, and says that the edict was a device of the Archbishop of 
Mainz to keep him away from Worms, and tempt him to despise the order 
of the Emperor, ll orfc*, Erl. Frankf. ed., LXIV. 307. 

2 Notwithstanding this danger, Janssen thinks (II. 158) that it required 
no " special courage" for Luther to go to Worms. 

8 April 14 (De Wette, I. 587): " Christus vivit, ct intrabimus Worma.tlo.rn 
invitix omnibus portis inferiti et potentatibus wris " (Eph. 2:2). 

4 Spalatin reports the saying thus: " Dass cr mir Spalatino aus Oppen 
heim yen Worms schricb : Er woUle yen Worms wenn yleich so viel Tcnfel 
dnrinnen wdrcn als tinnier Zicycl da waren" 1 " (Walch, XV. 2174). A year 
afterwards, in a letter to the Elector Frederick, March 5, 1522 (De Wette, II. 
139), Luther gives the phrase with this modification: " Er [the Devil] xah 
mein Herz too/*/, da ich zn Worms einkam, daxs, wenn ich hatte yewusst, 
(/a.s.s KG viel Tcufel auf m n-h yrhalten hiitten, al$ Zieyel auf den Dachern 
sind, ware ich dennoch mitten unter sie yesprunyen mil FreudeH." In the 
verbal rejiort he gave to his friends at Eisleben in 1540 (Erl. Frankf. ed., 
vol. LXIV. ]>. 3(58): " I<-h entbot ihm [Spalatin] wicdcr : Wcnn .so vicl 
Tertfel zu Worms wdren als Zieyel ai(f den JJiichern, nock [doch] wollt ich 
hinein. " 


his feelings at that critical period: "I was fearless, I was 
afraid of nothing; God can make one so desperately bold. 
I know not whether I could be so cheerful now." 1 Mathesius 
says, with reference to this courage: u lf the cause is good, 
the heart expands, giving courage and energy to evangelists 
and soldiers." 

Sickingen invited Luther, through Martin Bucer, in person, 
to his castle Kbernburg, where he would be perfectly safe 
under the protection 1 of friends. Glapio favored the plan, 
and wished to have a personal conference with Luther about 
a possible compromise and co-operation in a moderate scheme 
of reform. But Luther would not be diverted from his aim, 
and sent word, that, if the Emperor s confessor wished, he 
could see him in Worms. 

Luther arrived in Worms on Tuesday morning, April 10, 
15*21, at ten o clock, shortly before early dinner, in an open 
carriage with his Wittenberg companions, preceded by the 
imperial herald, and followed by a number of gentlemen on 
horseback. He was dressed in his monastic gown. 2 The 
watchman on the tower of the cathedral announced the 
arrival of the procession by blowing the horn, and thousands 
of people gathered to see the heretic. 3 

As lie stepped from the carriage, he said, "God will be 
with me." 

The papal legate reports this fact to Rome, and adds that 
Luther looked around with the eyes of a demon. 4 Cardinal 

1 Iliid: Denn ich war unrrschrocken, fiirchtete mlch Htclttx; (intt kann 
eincn wohl .so toll mnrhvn. I<:h weix.i nicltt, oh icli jctzt (inch .so freudiy 
tf</r ." 

Sec Luther s picture of that year, by Cranarh, in tho small biography 
of Kostlin, p. li:)T (Scrilmcr s ed.). It is very different from those to which 
we are accustomed. 

8 " Xiinfnlir / /<," says Luther (LXIV. .%), "tinf chirm oflcncn Wii i- 
Icln in tar tin r K<i)>i n zn ]\ i>nnx ( in. 1) kamcn (illc L< nt< auf die G a.s.sen 
Wi<l irolltdi ill n Mi nn-lt 1). Murtinuin .srArn." 

4 Alt-ander to Viee-Chanei-llor Medir-i, from Worms, April 10: " Essn Lu- 
ther in ilf-nr<-nmt cumin rcrxix hue it illuc dtiiwniucis oculia dittae : * Duns 
erit >ru >H< . " liri -er I. 14;J. 


Cajetan was similarly struck at Augsburg with the mysteri 
ous fire of the " profound eyes," and the " wonderful specu 
lations," of the German monk. 

Luther was lodged in the house of the Knights of St. John 
with two counselors of the Elector. He received visitors 
till late at night. 1 

The city was in a fever-heat of excitement and expecta 

55. Luther s Testimony before the Diet. April 17 and 
18, 1521. 

See Lit. in 53. 

On the day after his arrival, in the afternoon at four 
o clock, Luther was led by the imperial marshal, Ulrich von 
Pappenheim, and the herald, Caspar Sturm, through circuit 
ous side-streets, avoiding the impassable crowds, to the hall 
of the Diet in the bishop s palace where the Emperor and 
his brother Ferdinand resided. He was admitted at about 
six o clock. There he stood, a poor monk of rustic manners, 
yet a genuine hero and confessor, with the fire of genius and 
enthusiasm flashing from his eyes and the expression of 
intense earnestness and thoughtful ness on his face, before a 
brilliant assembly such as he had never seen: the young Em 
peror, six Electors (including his own sovereign), the Pope s 
legates, archbishops, bishops, dukes, margraves, princes, 
counts, deputies of the imperial cities, ambassadors of for 
eign courts, and a numerous array of dignitaries of every 
rank ; in one word, a fair representation of the highest 
powers in Church and State. 2 Several thousand spectators 
were collected in and around the building and in the streets, 
anxiously waiting for the issue. 

1 " TV/o il wondo," writes Aleamler in the same letter, "went to see 
Luther after dinner." 

2 Walch, XV. 222.">-2231, gives a list of over two hundred members of the 
Diet that were present. 


Dr. Johann von Eck, 1 as the official of the Archbishop of 
Treves, put to him, in the name of the Emperor, simply two 
questions in Latin and German, first, whether he acknowl 
edged the books laid before him on a bench (about twenty- 
five in number) to be his own; and, next, whether he would 
retrac-t them. Dr. Sehurf, Luther s colleague and advocate, 
who stood beside him, demanded that the titles of those 
books be read. 2 This was done. Among them were some 
such inoffensive and purely devotional books as an exposi 
tion of the Lord s Prayer and of the Psalms. 

Luther was apparently overawed by the august assembly, 
nervously excited, unprepared for a summary condemnation 
without an examination, and spoke in a low, almost inaudible 
tone. Many thought that he was about to collapse. He 
acknowledged in both languages the authorship of the books; 
but as to the more momentous question of recantation he 
humbly requested further time for consideration, since it in 
volved the salvation of the soul, and the truth of the word 
of God, which was higher than any thing else in heaven or 
on earth. 

We must respect him all the more for this reasonable 
request, which proceeded not from want of courage, but 
from a profound sense of responsibility. 

The Emperor, after a brief consultation, granted him "out 
of his clemency" a respite of one day. 

Aleander reported on the same day to Rome, that the 
heretical "fool" entered laughing, and left despondent; that 

1 Xot to bo confounded with the more famous Dr. Eck of Ingolstadt. 
Aleander. who lodged with him on the same floor, calls him "/j/>//io liter<(tis- 
siinn" 1 and "," who had already done good service in the execution 
of the papal demands at Treves. Briefer, I. 140. In a dispatch of April 2 .>, 
he solicits a present for him from the Roman See. (" Al ojfirinl de Tret<ri 
wn (jufilrhp presfnt* ftttrebhe ?/f//," etc., p. 174). Fronde, in his Luth -r (pp. 
32, 33. 3.1). confounds the Eck of Treves with the Eck of Ingolstailt, Aleander 
with C ajetan, and makes several other blunders, which spoil his lively de 
scription <>f the scene at Worms. 

2 " Le<juntnr titull li trorum, he cried aloud. 


even among his sympathizers some regarded him now ns a 
fool, others as one possessed by the Devil ; \vhile many 
looked upon him as a saint full of the Holy Spirit; but in 
any case, he had lost much of his reputation. 1 

The shrewd Italian judged too hastily. On the same 
evening Luther recollected himself, and wrote to a friend: 
" I shall not retract one iota, so Christ help me." 2 

On Thursday, the 18th of April, Luther appeared a second 
and last time before the Diet. 

It was the greatest day in his life. lie never appeared 
more heroic and sublime. lie never represented a principle 
of more vital and general importance to Christendom. 

On his way to the Diet, an old warrior, Georg von Frunds- 
berg, is reported to have clapped him on the shoulder, with 
these words of cheer: "My poor monk, my poor monk, thou 
art going to make such a stand as neither I nor any of my 
companions in arms have ever done in our hottest battles. 
If thou art sure of the justice of thy cause, then forward in 
God s name, and be of good courage : God will not forsake 
thee." 3 

He was again kept waiting two hours outside the hall, 
among a dense crowd, but appeared more cheerful and confi 
dent than the day before. lie had fortified himself by prayer 
and meditation, and was ready to risk life itself to his honest 

1 Letter to Vice-Chancellor Medici, Worms, April 17, 1521 (in Briefer, 
I. c. p. 147): " El pazzo era cntrato ridcndo ct coram Cesar c yirara II cai>o 
continuamente qufr ct la, alto e basso; poi nclpartir nan parca COM alleyro. 
Quimolti di qitelli et [= etiam] die lo favoreygiavano, poi die Vhanno visto, 
Vhanno existiniado dd pazzo, dd dcmoniaco, molti altri santo et pieno di 
spiritu santo; tutta volta ha perso in oyni inudo inolta reputations della 
opinions prima." 

2 April 17, to John Cuspinianus, an imperial counsellor. See De Wette, 
I. 587 sq. 

3 " Monchlein, Monchlein, du yehst jetzt einen Cany, derylcichcn idi und 
mancJier Oberster auch in unscrer allerernstcstcn Schlachtordmtny nicht </e- 
than haben," etc. The saying is reported by Mathesius (who puts it on the 
second day of trial, not on the first, as Kostlin and others), by Spangenberg, 
and beckeudorf (Leipzig ed. of 1094, vol. I. 150, in Latin and German). 


conviction of divine truth. The torches were lighted when 
he wns admitted. 

Dr. Kck, speaking again in Latin and German, reproached 
him for asking delay, and put the second question in this 
modified form : " Wilt tliou defend all the books which thou 
dost acknowledge to he thine, or recant some part?" 

Luther answered in a well-considered, premeditated speech, 
with modesty and firmness, and a voice that could be heard 
all over the hall. 1 

After apologizing for his ignorance of courtly manners, 
having been brought up in monastic simplicity, lie divided 
his books into three classes: 2 (1) Books which simply set 
forth evangelical truths, professed alike by friend and foe: 
these he could not retract. (2) Books against the corrup 
tions and abuses of the papacy which vexed and martyred 
the conscience, and devoured the property of the German 
nation: these he could not retract without cloaking wicked 
ness and tyranny. (3) Books against his popish opponents: 
in these lie confessed to have been more violent than was 
proper, but even these lie could not retract without giving 
aid and comfort to his enemies, who would triumph and 
make things worse. In defense of his books lie could only 
say in tin; words of Christ: " If I have spoken evil, bear 
witness of the evil ; but if well, why smitest thou me?" If 
his opponents could convict him of error by prophetic and 
evangelical Scriptures, he would revoke his books, and be 
the first to commit them to the flames. He concluded with 
a warning to the young Emperor not to begin his reign by 

1 " Rexpondit Doctor Martinus et ipnc latine ct germnnlcpj (jn<tn<in<un sup- 
pliciter, non clantiw, ac intnlrxtr, non t(tnnn nine Christiana aniinoxitate ct 
coHfituntiti." A -tu, etc. (O/. L<if., VI. .)). He be^an with the customary 
titles: " AllerdurchlnuchtifjHter, yro8nniCLchtiyntcr Kdixcr, Durchlauchtiye 
Chnrfiirxtcn, fini uliijxte un<l r/niiili je Hcrrcn!" These fulsome titles are 
used to this day in Germany, as if a king or emperor were mightier than the 
Almighty ! 

- In his report at Eisleben, lie calls the three classes brielly Lvhrbucher, 
Zankbuchcr, and Dinputationea, 


condemning the word of God, and pointed to the judgments 
over Pharaoh, the king of Babylon, and the ungodly kings 
of Israel. 

He was requested to repeat his speech in Latin. 1 This he 
did with equal firmness and with eyes upraised to heaven. 

The princes held a short consultation. Eck, in the name 
of the Emperor, sharply reproved him for evading the qiies- 
tion ; it was useless, he said, to dispute with him about views 
which were not new, but had been already taught by IIus, 
Wiclif, and other heretics, and had been condemned for suf 
ficient reasons by the Council of Constance before the Pope, 
the Emperor, and the assembled fathers. He demanded a 
round and direct answer "without horns." 

This brought on the crisis. 

Luther replied, he would give an answer "with neither 
horns nor teeth." 2 From the inmost depths of his con 
science educated by the study of the word of God, he made 
in both languages that memorable declaration which marks 
an epoch in the history of religious liberty : 

u Unless I am refuted and convicted by testimonies of the 
Scriptures or by clear arguments (since I believe neither 
the Pope nor the councils alone ; it being evident that they 
have often erred and contradicted themselves), I am con 
quered by the Holy Scriptures quoted by me, and my con 
science is bound in the word of God : I can not and will not 

1 So Luther says himself (in his Eisleben report of the Worms events, in 
the Erl. Frkf. eel., vol. LXIV. 370): " Diewcil ich rcdete, bcgehrtcn sie von 
mir, ich sollt c.s noch einmal wiederholen init latcinischen Wortcn . . . Ich 
wiederholte idle meinc Worte lateinisch. Das yeficl Ilerzoy Fnedrich, dem 
Ckurfursten iibcrans wohl." Spalatin confirms this in Epitome Actonun 
Luther i, etc.: " Dirit primo gcrmanicc, deinde latine." Other reports put 
the Latin speech first; so the Acta Lutli. (in the Erl. Frkf. ed. of Op. Lat., 
VI. 9: rcspondit I). Martinus et ipse latine et germanice). Kostlin follows 
the latter report (I. 445, 451), and overlooked the testimony of Luther, who 
must have known best. 

2 In the German text, " cln unstilssige iind unbeissige Antwort " (vol. 
LXIV. :jsi ): i.e., an answer neither offensive nor biting with reference, 
no doubt, to his concluding warning. 


recant any tiling, since it is unsafe and dangerous to do any 
tiling against the conscience." 1 

So fur the reports are clear and harmonious. What fol 
lowed immediately after this testimony is somewhat uncer 
tain and of less importance. 

Dr. Eck exchanged a few more words with Luther, protest 
ing against his assertion that councils may err and have erred. 
41 You can not prove it," he said. Luther repeated his asser 
tion, and pledged himself to prove it. Thus pressed and 
threatened, amidst the excitement and confusion of the audi 
ence, he uttered in German, at least in substance, that con 
cluding sentence which has impressed itself most on the 
memory of men : 

"Here I stand. [I can not do otherwise.] God help 
me! Amen."- 

The sentence, if not strictly historical, is true to the situa- 

1 We crivo aNo the German ami Latin texts. " Wril drnn Eure Kuixcr- 

ij> xtnf mid E"i e (tnadcn (.inc whlirlttc Antwort f>e<i< lirai, .so will iffi 
etne Anttrnrt oA/f Il>>rn< r nnd Zrihnc ycb<-n dicxcnndsscn ; */s ,x< * dant, </<(.s.s 
ictt dnrrft A n[ii*K - dvr Xrhrift <>der dnrch txlle (Jriindc iihrrtnindcn <;</<, 
dtnn icli <jl<ni } ,, !<-, ,l ( -r dan I tij/xt, nndt d< n Konzilicn allc in, diiwil <t/n 
Td j li - jt, f/".s.s *!< } ( r* ydrrt nn<l xiclt wliixt iciderit]>rocficn lialxn, xn >>in 
ich iiberwundcn >l>ir< h <li> run mir nnrjcfiiltrtcn lni!;>/cn fichrjftcn, mid imin 
Gewiwn i*t <icf iii(ii n in Gotten \\ <>rt ; iridcrriifcn kann Ich niclits unil will 
ich nichtit, dirwf it wider (lets (Icii ixm-it zn hnndcln mwichcr mid (icfiihrlich 
{*. " S--; Iv -tlin, I. r>L . The oldest reports vary a little in the lani;uai, f. 
Some have x -//f//i y"/-// 7/i" mid tnrrklich* 1 rxiirlnn for hdlc drinidi-, and at 
the close: * // < // ti idi-r dan ftfirinnf-n zn liundcln lii-xrhwcrlirh mid unh< il- 
tain, anrf, i/ffiihrli -f, int. 1 \\ <-rk<- (Krl. Frkf. nl.J, vol. I. XIV. :;s 

Thf Latin t-xt as -^iven in the Arta Lntfuri \\ nrnt<iti<r li<i>>!t<t is as fol 
lows: "/// LnthcriiN : (jnandn cr<i^ sfrcninxinict Mnjcstns v^trfi Doininn- 
ti<>n< ni/ue rcxtfd .<<!iiij>li.r rcniionxinn jnlunt, <l<il><> ilhid, 7j"/e cornittiini, 
netjnr dentfifmn, in hmir iimdnin : JV/.s/ conrictun fttero ifstimoniin Srr!]>- 
turaruin, n>il rutinni t rid* iitf (nain n> </ne 1 i ixi , uef/ne Conriliin noli ft cri-dn, 
Citm conxt t ro.s rrrns.<<i> nti]>!nx, <t xi>>i ?/w/.x contradLrinae), rictnx xttni Xcriji- 
turift a nif (tilditrtis rnptnijnc pst conxrit-ntid in rcrlii* Dei ; rerocare nc /nc 
po&xmn nc f />ii> ruin i/Hid /uam, ruin r<ilrn ronncirntidiii ayi-rc nerjue tutntii 
tit, ncfftif in/"/ " ". " <)iru Lot. (Krankf. cd.), vol. \l. l:j sq. 

2 " Ilit-r t 1C /</(. [l -h kann ni<-ht <in<brx.} (iott hi Iff tnir! Ann-n." 
The bracketed words cannot lu- traced to a primitive source. See the critical 
note at the close of this section. 


tion, and expresses Luther s mental condition at the time, 
the strength of his conviction, and prayer for God s help, 
which was abundantly answered. It furnishes a parallel to 
Galileo s equally famous, but less authenticated, "It does 
move, for all that " (E pur si muove). 

The Emperor would hear no more, and abruptly broke up 
the session of the Diet at eight o clock, amid general com 

On reaching his lodgings, Luther threw up his arms, and 
joyfully exclaimed, " I am through, I am through ! " To 
Spalatin, in the presence of others, he said, "If I had a thou 
sand heads, I would rather have them all cut off one by one 
than make one recantation." 

The impression he made on the audience was different ac 
cording to conviction and nationality. What some admired 
as the enthusiasm of faith and the strength of conviction, 
appeared to others as fanaticism and heretical obstinacy. 

The Emperor, a stranger to German thought and speech, 1 
declared after the first hearing : " This man will never make 
a heretic of me." He doubted the authorship of the famous 
books ascribed to him. 2 At the second hearing he was hor 
rified at the disparagement of general councils, as if a Ger 
man monk could be wiser than the whole Catholic Church. 
The Spaniards and Italians were no doubt of the same opin 
ion ; they may have been repelled also by his lowly appear 
ance and want of refined manners. Some of the Spaniards 
pursued him with hisses as he left the room. The papal 
legates reported that he raised his hands after the manner of 

1 The little German he knew was only the Platt-Dcntwh of the Low 
Countries. He always communicated with his German subjects in Latin or 
French, or by the mouth of his brother Ferdinand. 

2 Aleander (I.e. p. 170): " Cesar palain dtiit ct sepisslme postea repctiit, 
cite ntai credcrh che V habbii composto detti libri." The mixing of Latin 
and Italian is characteristic of the Aleander dispatches. He was inclined to 
ascribe the authorship of the greater part of Luther s books to Melanchthon, 
of whom he says that he has "im belitmiino, ma maliynissimo inyeytw" 
(p. 172). 


the Herman soldiers rejoicing over a clever stroke, and rep 
resented him as a vulgar fellow fond of good wine. 1 They 
praised the Emperor as a truly Christian and Catholic prince 
who assured them the next day of his determination to treat 
Luther as a heretic. The Venetian ambassador, otherwise 
impartial, judged that Luther disappointed expectations, and 
showed neither much learning, nor much prudence, nor was 
he blameless in life. 2 

But the German delegates received a different impression. 
When Luther left the Bishop s palace greatly exhausted, 
the old Duke Erik of ttrunswiuk sent him a silver tankard 
of Eimbeck beer, after having first drunk of it himself 
to remove suspicion. Luther said, " As Duke Erik has 
remembered me to-day, may the Lord Jesus remember him 
in his last agony." The Duke thought of it on his death 
bed, and found comfort in the words of the gospel : " Whoso 
ever shall give unto one of these little ones a cup of eold 
water only, in the name of a disciple, he shall in no wise lose 
his reward." The Elector Frederick expressed to Spalatin 
the same evening his delight with Luther s conduct: *IIow 
excellently did Father Martin speak both in Latin and Ger 
man before the Emperor and the Estates! lie was bold 
enough, if not too much so." 3 The cautious Elector would 
have been still better pleased if Luther had been more niod- 

1 Aleander anil Caracciolo to the Vicp-fhancellor Medici, April 1 . . 1">L 1 
(Briefer, I. l~> - >): " Murtinv uscito fuorci <b llu xnln Ce.saw <ilz<> l<t n<"ii > in 
alto timrt milihoii Gernwnorutn, (/n(i<1<> ernltdno <l t un I d rnljio <li yinxti n." 
In a letter of April L T (I.e. p. 1W). they call Luther " // n-in-rnhilr ri >nl<l<>," > 
who before liis departure drank in the presence of many persons " nmltf 
tozz> >li innlr<is!(i, <lt lln <i>i( n< efort< ninorvxo." Tin* charge of inteinper- 
ann- is n-jM-atfil in a dispatcli (f April 2 . (p. 170): " In c n-i< tn, <i!l<i <^i{t>. 
tetto Luther e deiliti*niino." Thai Luther nse.l to drink heer and \\ineac- 
cordinu to the iiniversal custom of hi.s a---, is an un-loulited fa. L ; hut that he 
Was intemperate in eat ini; or drinkiiiL, , is a slander of his enemies. Melaneh- 
thon, who knew him hest. hears testimony to his temperance. .See below, 
the section on his private life. 

8 C ontarenus ad Mattlueum Dundalum, quoted by Kanke, I. JWO. 

Wuluh, XV. ^240. 


erate, and not attacked the Councils. Persons of distinction 
called on him in his lodgings till late at night, and cheered 
him. Among these was the young Landgrave Philip of 
Hesse, who afterwards embraced the cause of the Reforma 
tion with zeal and energy, but did it much harm by his 
bigamy. After a frivolous jest, which Luther smilingly 
rebuked, he wished him God s blessing. 1 

The strongest sympathizers with Luther were outside of 
the Diet, among the common people, the patriotic nobles, the 
scholars of the school of Erasmus, and the rising generation 
of liberal men. As he returned from the Diet to his lodg 
ings, a voice in the crowd was heard to exclaim : " Blessed 
be the womb that bare this son." Tonstal, the English 
ambassador, wrote from Worms, that " the Germans every 
where are so addicted to Luther, that, rather than he should 
be oppressed by the Pope s authority, a hundred thousand of 
the people will sacrifice their lives." 2 In the imperial cham 
bers a paper was found with the words : u Woe to the nation 
whose king is a child" (Eccl. x. 1G). 3 An uprising of four 
hundred German knights with eight thousand soldiers was 
threatened in a placard on the city hall ; but the storm passed 
away. Hutten and Sickingen were in the Emperor s service. 

1 The interview as related by Luther (Walr-h, XV. 2247; Erlangen -Frank 
furt edition, LXIV. 373) is characteristic of this prince, and foreshadows 
his future conduct. " Der Landgraf von Hexscn kani zu Worms erstlich 
zn inir. Er war aber noc.1i nicht anf ineincr Seitcn, und kam in II of 
yerilten, gin;/ zn ntir in jnein Geinach, wollte midi xe/ieu. Er war (0>cr nock 
f<el/r jnn i, *))rarli : Lieber llerr Doctor, ivie yeliCx? Da antwortete Ich: 
Gnadiyer Ilcrr, ich hoff, es soil gut warden. Da sayte er : Ich }ii>re, Herr 
Doctor, Hi i lefiret, ivenn ein Mann alt wird und seiner Fran en nicht inehr 
Eliepflicht leixten kann, das.s dann die Fran ina.y cincn andercn Mann 
iichineii, nnd lachte, dcnn die Ilofriithe hulten x ifun eingeblasen. Ich 
aber lacltte ouch nnd saute: Adi nein, </itadiyer I/err, Ener Filrstlich 
Gnad sollt n icht also reden. Aber er <jln</ balde wit-der von mir hinicey, 
gab mir die lland und aa<jte: Habt iltr Ilecht, Herr Doctor, no helfe euch 
Gott. " 

2 In Fiddes" Life of Wolwy, quoted by Kanke. I. 337, note. 

3 Ranke (1. 337) says in den kaixerlichen Gemaclient." Other reports 
say that these words weie placarded in public places at Worms. 


"Ilutten only barks, but does not bite," was a saying in 

Th papal party triumphed in the Diet. Nothing else 
could be expected if the historic continuity of the Latin 
Church and of the Holy German Roman Empire was to IK> 
preserved. Mad Luther submitted his case to a general 
council, to which in the earlier stages of the conflict he had 
himself repeatedly appealed, the result might have been dif 
ferent, and a moderate reform of the mediaeval Church under 
the headship of the Pope of Rome might have been accom 
plished ; but no more. By denying the infallibility of a 
council, he openly declared himself a heretic, and placed 
himself in opposition to the universal opinion, which regarded 
(ecumenical councils, beginning with the iirst of Nic;ea in 
32"), as the ultimate tribunal for the decision of theological 
controversies. The infallibility of the Pope was as yet an 
open (|iiestion, and remained so till 1*70, but the infallibility 
of a general council was at that time regarded as settled. 
A protest against it could only be justified by a providential 
mission and actual success. 

It was the will of Providence to prepare the way, through 
the instrumentality of Luther, for independent church-organi 
zations, and the development of new types of Christianity on 
the basis of the word of God and the freedom of thought. 


These words of Luther have been reported a^ain ami aiiain, not only in 
popular books, but iu learned histories, without a doubt of their genuineness. 
Tlu-y an- engraven on his monument at Worms. 

But this very fact called forth a critical investigation of the Saxon Arehi- 
varius. Dr. C. A. II. Uurkhardt (author of the learned work : L>itln>r n 
]lr n-fii <-rhm-l), fV ,,r !;> Cliot.x i i^llik-rll <l r Anhmrl /,"//,</.<. " lll> *//, 
ti ti, ir/i k/nm ni<-ht (in<l>i-s. Cult li<Y inir. Atu ii," in the " Theol. Studieu 
imd Kritikt-n" for ISd .i, III. pp. .~.17-~>. !l. II 1 rejects all but the last three 
words (not the ii li , t , as .laiissen incorrectly reports, in his History. II. l .">, 
note). His sie\v was accrpted by Diuiel Sclienkel (l>7<>), and \V. Mauien- 
brecl,er (<;,srl,. ./. A-,,//,. /,./,,., Jvso, I. ;;j.S). The latter calls the words 
even "lmproi>er and unworthy," because theatrical, which we cannot admit. 


On the other hand, Professor Kostlin, the biographer of Luther, has 
come to the rescue of the whole sentence in his Easter-program: Luther s 
Hede in Worms, Halle, 1874; comp. his notes in the " Studien und Kritiken " 
for 1882, p. 551 sq., and his Martin Lather, I. 45:], and the note, p. 800 sq. 
(second ed. 1883). His conclusion was accepted by Ilanke in the sixth ed. 
of his Hist, of Germany (I. 330), and by Monckeberg (pastor of St. Nicolai 
in Hamburg), who supports it by new proofs, in an essay, Die Glaubwurdiy- 
keit ties Lutherwortes in Worms, in the "Studien und Kritiken" for 1876, 
No. II. pp. 295-300. 

The facts are these. In Luther s own Latin notes which he prepared, 
probably at Worms, for Spalatin, there is no such sentence except the words, 
"God help me." The prayer which he offered loudly in his chamber on 
the evening before his second appearance before the Diet, and which some 
one has reported, concludes with the words, " Gott helfe mir, Amen!" 
(Walch, X. 1721; Erl.-Frkf. cd., LXIV. 289 sq.). Spalatin in his (defective) 
notes on the acts of the Diet, preserved at Weimar (Gesammtarchiv, licich- 
taysactcn, 1521), and in his Annal.i (ed. by Cyprian, p. 41), vouches likewise 
only for the words, " Gott helfe mir, Amen /" With this agrees the original 
edition of the Acta Lnthcri \Vormatiw habita which were published imme 
diately after the Diet (reprinted in the Frankf. ed. of the Opera Lat., vol. 
YI. p. 14, see second foot-note). 

But other contemporary reports give the whole sentence, though in differ 
ent order of the words. See the comparative table of Burkhardt, I.e. pp. 
525-529. A German report (reprinted in the Erl.-Frkf. ed., vol. LXIV. p. 
383) gives as the last words of Luther (in reply to Eck): " Gott kumm mir 
zn Ililf! Amen. Da bin ich." The words " Da bin ich" (Here I am) are 
found also in another source. Mathesius reports the full sentence as coming 
from the lips of Luther in 1540. In a German contemporary print and on a 
fly-leaf in the University library of Heidelberg (according to Kostlin), the 
sentence appears in this order: " Ich kann nicht cinders ; hier stcJC ich ; Gott 
hc lfe mir." In the first edition of Luther s Latin works, published 1540, the 
words appear in the present order: " liter stch 1 ich," etc. In this form they 
have passed into general currency. 

Kostlin concludes that the only question is about the order of words, and 
whether they were spoken at the close of his main declaration, or a little 
afterwards at the close of the Diet. I have adopted the latter view, which 
agrees with the contemporary German report above quoted. Kolde, in his 
monograph on Luther at Worms (p. GO), agrees substantially with Kostlin, 
and says: " Wir u i.wn nicht mchr, in welchcm Zusammenhany diese Worte 
ycsjirochrn warden sind, (inch kbnncn sie viclleicht eticas cinders yclautet 
haben ; bd dcr herrschenden Unruhe hat der eine Ucrichtenttatter den Aus- 
spruch so, der andcre ihn so vcrstanden ; sicherlich driickten sie zn yleicher 
Zeit seine felsenfeste Uberzeuyuny von der Wdhrheit seines in sirh yewissen 
Glaubcns mis, wie dcts Bewusstsein, duns /tier mir Gott helfen konne." 


56. Reflections on Luther s Testimony at Worms. 

Luther s testimony before the Diet is an event of world- 
historical importance and far-reaching effect. It opened an 
intellectual conflict which is still going on in the civilized 
world. He stood there as the fearless champion of the su- 
premacv of the word of God over the traditions of men, and 
of the liberty of conscience over the tyranny of authority. 

For this liberty, all Protestant Christians, who enjoy the 
fruit of his courage, owe him a debt of gratitude. His re 
cantation could not, any more than his martyrdom, have 
stopped the Reformation; but it would have retarded its 
progress, and indefinitely prolonged the oppressive rule of 

When tradition becomes a wall against freedom, when au 
thority degenerates into tyranny, the very blessing is turned 
into a curse, and history is threatened with stagnation and 
death. 1 At such rare junctures, Providence raises those 
pioneers of progress, who have the intellectual and moral 
courage to break through the restraints at the risk of 
their lives, and to open new paths for the onward march 
of history. This consideration furnishes the key for the 
proper appreciation of Luther s determined stand at this 
historical crisis. 

Conscience is the voice of God in man. It is his most 
sacred possession. No power can be allowed to stand be- 

1 Tin D<-vil sometimes tells tin- truth. So Mepliistopheles, in Goethe s 
F nixt, when In- excuses the aversion of the student to the, study of juris 
prudence-, and says with a wicked purpose: 

K.I rrVn xit h (icxftz 1 nn>l lit rtitc 
\\ ie dm- rjc f/e Kr<tnkln-it fort ; 
S /f xrlil<"])))(;n tmi Grxrlilecld xlcfi zitin Gcschlcchte 
I ml HchU- tchen Hddit ro/i Oft zn Oft. 
Vcrnni\ft vinl I nxinn, \\ nhltlmt I laye ; 
W>h >lir, <l<ixx du tin Ek< I l>it ! 
Vnin /frr/i/r, dan in it mix / "" < M, 

Von dein 1st, Ittider ! nit- die /V 


tween the gift and the giver. Even an erring conscience 
must be respected, and cannot be forced. The liberty of 
conscience was theoretically and practically assorted by the 
Christians of the ante-Nicene age, against Jewish and hea 
then persecution ; but it was suppressed by the union of 
Church and State after Constantino the Great, and severe 
laws were enacted under his successors against every depart 
ure from the established creed of the orthodox imperial 
Church. These laws passed from the Roman to the German 
Empire, and were in full force all over Europe at the time 
when Luther raised his protest. Dissenters hud no rights 
which Catholics were bound to respect ; even a sacred 
promise given to a heretic might be broken without sin, 
and was broken by the Emperor Sigismund in the case of 
Hus. 1 

This tyranny was brought to an end by the indomitable 
courage of Luther. 

Liberty of conscience may, of course, be abused, like any 
other liberty, and may degenerate into heresy ami licentious 
ness. The individual conscience and private judgment often 
do err, and they are more likely to err than a synod or coun 
cil, which represents the combined wisdom of many. Lu 
ther himself was far from denying this fact, and stood open 
to correction and conviction by testimonies of Scripture and 
clear arguments. He heartily accepted all the doctrinal decis 
ions of the first four oecumenical councils, and had the deepest 

1 Dr. (Bishop) ITcfolc discusses this case at length from the Roman 
Catholic standpoint, in his Concilicnf/exchicfifc, vol. VII. (1800), pp. 218 sqq. 
lie defends Sigismund and the Council of Constance on the ground that a 
sdli-itx condnctus protects only against illegal violence, hut not against the 
legal course of justice 1 and deserved punishment, and that its validity for the 
return of Hus to Bohemia depended on his recantation. But no such con 
dition was expressed in the letter of safe-conduct (as given hy Ilefele, p. 221), 
which grants Hus freedom to come, stay, and return (franxire, uiorurt ct re- 
d.h c Wx-rt }. Sigismund had expressly promised him " at nulni* </ Jiohe- 
inifim rciHroii " (p. 220). Such a promise would have been quite unneces 
sary in case of his recantation. 


respect for tlie Apostles Creed on which his own Cate 
chism is Inused. But he protested against the Council of Con 
stance for condemning the opinions of Ilus, which he thought 
were in accordance with the Scriptures. The Roman Church 
itself must admit the fallibility of councils if the Vatican 
decree of papal infallibility is to stand ; for more than one 
(ecumenical council has denounced PopG Iloiiorius as a 
heretic, and even Popes have confirmed the condemnation of 
their predecessor. Two conllicting infallibilities neutralize 
each other. 1 

Luther did not appeal to his conscience alone, hut first and 
last to the Scripture as he understood it after the most ear 
liest study. His conscience, as he said, was bound in the 
word of God, who cannot err. There, and there alone, he 
recognized infallibility. By recanting, he would have com 
mitted a grievous sin. 

One man with the truth on his side is stronger than a 
majority in error, and will conquer in the end. Christ was 
right against the whole Jewish hierarchy, against Herod and 
Pilate, who conspired in condemning him to the cross. St. 
Paul was right against Judaism and heathenism combined, 
u units vi / xux niumlmn ; St. Athanasins, the father of or 
thodoxy," was right against dominant Arianism ; Galileo 
Galilei was right against the Inquisition and the common 
opinion of his age on the motion of the eaith: Dollinger 
was right against the Vatican Council when, "as a Chris 
tian, as a theologian, as an historian, and as a citi/.en," he 
protested against the new dogma of the infallibility of the 
Pope. 2 

1 See my Cltiirrh Hint., vol. IV. 500 s<jq. ; and Cn "h <>( f lirixtrn lom, 
vol. I. ];: S <|M. 

* Dollingcr a declaration of March 2S, 1S71, for which ho was excom 
municated, April 17, l>71. notwithstanding his eminent services to the 
Roman Catholic Church a her mst learned historian, hears some resem 
blance to Luther s declaration at Worms. See .SohalT, l r> -/.s f L hrinti-n- 
dotn, I. lit."* s<jfj. 


That Luther was right in refusing to recant, and that 
he uttered the will of Providence in bearing testimony 
to the supremacy of the word of God and the freedom 
of conscience, has been made manifest by the verdict of 

57. Private Conferences with Luther. The Emperor s 

On the morning after Luther s testimony, the Emperor 
sent a message a sort of personal confession of faith 
written by his own hand in French, to the Estates, informing 
them, that in consistency with his duty as the successor of 
the most Christian emperors of Germany and the Catholic 
kings of Spain, who had always been true to the Roman 
Church, he would now treat Luther, after sending him home 
with his safe-conduct, as an obstinate and convicted heretic, 
and defend with all his might the faith of his forefathers and 
of the councils, especially that of Constance. 1 

Some of the deputies grew pale at this decision ; the 
Romanists rejoiced. But in view of the state of public senti 
ment the Diet deemed it expedient to attempt private nego 
tiations for a peaceful settlement, in the hope that Luther 
might be induced to withdraw or at least to moderate his 
dissent from the general councils. The Emperor yielded in 
spite of Aleander s protest. 

The negotiations were conducted chiefly by Richard von 
Greiffenklau, Elector and Archbishop of Treves, and at his 
residence. lie was a benevolent and moderate churchman, 
to whom the Elector Frederick and Baron Miltitz had once 
desired to submit the controversy. The Elector of Branden 
burg, Duke George of Saxony, Dr. Yehus (chancellor of the 
Margrave of Baden), Dr. Eck of Treves, Dean Cochkuus of 

1 Walch, XV. 2235-2237. 


Frankfort, 1 ami the deputies of Strasburg and Augsburg, 
likewise took part in the conferences. 

These men \\ ere just as honest as Luther, but they occupied 
the standpoint of the mediaeval Church, and could not appre 
ciate his departure from the beaten track. The archbishop 
was very kind and gracious to Luther, as the latter himself 
admitted. He simplv required that in Christian humility he 
should withdraw his objections to the Council of Constance, 
leave the matter for the present with the Emperor and the 
Diet, and promise to accept the final verdict of a future 
council unfettered by a previous decision of the Pope. 
Such a council might re-assert its superiority over the 
Pope, as the reformatory councils of the fifteenth century 
had done. 

I Jut Luther had reason to fear the result of such submis 
sion, and remained as hard as a rock. He insisted on the 
supremacy of the word of (lod over all councils, and the 
right of judging for himself according to his conscience. 2 
lie declared at last, that unless convinced by the Scriptures 
or " clear and evident reasons," he could not yield, no matter 
what might happen to him ; and that he was willing to abide 

1 John Coehla iis (his original 11:11110 was Dnbcnock; h. 147D, at Wendcl- 
stein in Franconia, <1. at Bresau, \"> 2) was at first as a humanist an admirer 
oi Luther, hut turned against him shortly before the Diet of Worms, and 
became one of lii.s bitterest literary opionents. He went to Worms unasked, 
and wished to provoke him to a public disputation. He was employed by 
the Archbishop of Tivves as theological counsel, and by Aleander as a spy. 
Aleander paid him ten guilders "y/rr sue .s/uw" (see his dispatch of April 
2t in Hriegi-r. I. ]"">). ( ochheus wrote about KM) books, mostly polemical 
against the Reformers, ami mostly forgotten. Luther treated him with great 
contempt, and usually calls him "Doctor Kot/loft el," also " Kochloffrl." 
See HVA-.S, Krl. .,!., XXXI. L>7 m\.. L T5 s|., :;<>:. scp; LXII. 74, 7s. Otto, 
Jiitiiinn CiH ltlihis, <l<r Ilnimniixt, Hreslau, 1*74; Felician (iess, Johannes 
Coclilii iiM, <lrr Gf /mr Lntherx, Oppoln, ISM;, IV. f .ii pages. 

2 " Cn<i li<i<-r II<rr," he said to the Archbishop of Trier. " icti kann (ill<$ 
lfi<l< n, titter <li> liriU /f Si liri/t kunn / <// uirlit iltn i-<itl-n. " And again: 
" Liebcr will ich Koi>f und Lebvn ctr/a-rt/j, al& dan klarc Wort Gotten i~cr- 


by the test of Gamaliel, "If this work be of men, it will be 
overthrown ; but if it is of God, ye will not be able to over 
throw it " (Acts 5:38, 30). 1 

He asked the Archbishop, on April 25, to obtain for him 
the Emperor s permission to go home. In returning to his 
lodgings, he made a pastoral visit to a German knight, and 
told him in leaving : " To-morrow I go away." 

Three hours after the last conference, the Emperor sent 
him a safe-conduct for twenty-one days, but prohibited him 
from writing or preaching on the way. Luther returned 
thanks, and declared that his only aim was to bring about a 
reformation of the Church through the Scriptures, and that 
he was ready to suffer all for the Emperor and the empire, 
provided only he was permitted to confess and teach the 
word of God. This was his last word to the imperial com 
missioners. With a shake of hands they took leave of each 
other, never to meet again in this world. 

It is to the credit of Charles, that in spite of contrary 
counsel, even that of his former teacher and confessor, Car 
dinal Hadrian, who wished him to deliver Luther to the Pope 
for just punishment, he respected the eternal principle of 
truth and honor more than the infamous maxim that no faith 
should be kept with heretics. He refused to follow the ex 
ample of his predecessor, Sigismund, who violated the prom 
ise of safe-conduct given to II us, and ordered his execution 
at the stake after his condemnation by the Council of Con- 

1 See the reports on these useless conferences, in Walch, XV. 2237-2347, 
2202-231!); Cochheus, Com. de Actis Lntlicrl, and his Colloquium cum 
Lnf/ii. i o \\ ormati<v luditum; the report of Ilieronynius Vehus, published 
by ISeiclemann, in the " Zeitschrift f iir histor. Theol.," 1851, p. 80 sqq.; and 
thf report of Aleander in Briefer, I. l~n-H>(>. llanke says (I. 3:12), one 
illicit almost he tempted to wish that Luther had withdrawn his opposition 
to the councils, and contented himself for the present with the attack upon 
the abuses of the papacy, in which he had the nation with him; but he 
significantly adds, that the power of his spirit would have been broken if it 
had bound itself to any but purely religions considerations. " JJcr ciciy freie 
(j<.ist hcwi yt *i< /i in x<.invn dye-lien Baknen." 


stance. 1 The protection of Luther is the onlv service which 
Charles rendered to the Reformation, and the best thing, 
in a moral point of view, lie ever did. 2 Unfortunately, he 
diminished his merit hv his subsequent regret at Yuste. 3 
He had no other chance to crush the heretic. When he 
came to Wittenberg in 1547, Luther was in his grave, and 
the Reformation too deeply rooted to be overthrown by a 
short-lived victory over a few Protestant princes. 

It is interest ing to learn Aleaiuler s speculations about 
Luther s intentions immediately after his departure. He 
reported to Koine. April 20, 1521, that the heretic would seek 
refuge with the Hussites in Bohemia, and do four "beastly 
tilings" (V"*c ln-stitiJi): 1, write \\u\gArta Wormaciensia, to 
incite the people to insurrection ; 2, abolish the confessional; 
3, deny the real presence- in the sacrament; 4, deny the 
divinity of Christ. 4 

1 It is asserted by Gieseler and Ranke (I. 041) that the Council gave offi 
cial sanction to this maxim by declaring with regard to Has: " Stc ul mua 
silii [ 1 1 .// / x cut j)rontixx; <l<- j irc nutiu-nli, ditino rcl Innnano fucrlt in 
]irnjnil!r!inn c<!tlt >l<<-<i ft<l< I ohwrcdndti." Von der Hardt, C jnr. (, onxt. 
IV. :>L l: ManM. Conril. XXVII. T . l. Hefeh; (Cnni-nivnuexchlchtc, VII. 
2^7 sq.) charm s Gieselcr with sinning against the Council and against truth 
itself, and maintains that this decree, which is only found in the Codex Dor- 
rianus at Vienna, was merely proposed by a member, and not passed by 
the Council. But the undoubted decree of the l!th .Sess., Sept. 2:J, 141o, 
declares that a safe-conduct, though it should be observed by him who gave 
it as far as he was able, affords no protection against the punishment of a 
heretic if he refuses to recant; and the fact remains that IIus was not per 
mitted to return, and was burned in consequence of his condemnation by 
the Council and during its session, .July <l, 1415. Aeneas Sylvius (after 
wards Pope Tins II.) bears to him and Jerome of Prague the testimony: 
"AV///0 jiliilottoithornin tnni furti ttnhno morion ]n:rtnlinxc tradititr (judin 
isti inri H linin.^ The traditional prophecy of Hus: " Now ye burn a goose 
(anitcr ; Hus in Hohemian means goose); but out of my ashes shall rise a 
swan (ry./niix, Luther), which you shall not be able to burn," is not authentic, 
and originated in Luther s time as a tdtiriniuni pout i v*;ntu>n. 

" Kanke says (vol. V. :)us): " En ixt die unii-crnallii*t<j>-ixclt f/roxstc Hnnd- 
iujjf/ Knrln I ., <Iux cr ilniinila das yeyebene Wort hu/ivr ttt(-lltc als die kircfi- 
liclie Xatzinitj." 8 Set- alxn e, ]>. ASJ. 

4 Brieger, I. l<V.t sqq. Aleamler says in support of the fonrtli item, that 
the Lutheran " wretch. Martin But/.er (he calls him Put/er), had already 
fallen into the diabolical Arian heresy, as he had been told by the Emperor s 
confessor, Ghipio, who had a conference with Butzer and bickingeu. 


Luther did none of these tilings except the second, and 
this only in part. To prevent his entering Bohemia, Rome 
made provision to have him seized on the way. 

58. The Ban of the Empire. May 8 (26), 1521. 

After Luther s departure (April 26), his enemies had full 
possession of the ground. Frederick of Saxony wrote, May 
4: "Martin s cause is in a bad state : he will be persecuted ; 
not only Annas and Caiaphas, but also Pilate and Herod, 
are against him." Aleander reported to Rome, May 5, that 
Luther had by his bad habits, his obstinacy, and his " beast 
ly " speeches against councils, alienated the people, but that 
still many adhered to him from love of disobedience to the 
Pope, and desire to seize the church property. 

The Emperor commissioned Aleander to draw up a Latin 
edict against Luther. 1 It was completed and dated May 8 
(but not signed till May 26). On the same day the Emperor 
concluded an alliance with the Pope against France. They 
pledged themselves "to have the same friends and the 
same enemies," and to aid each other in attack and defense. 

The edict was kept back till the Elector Frederick and 
the Elector of the Palatinate with a large number of other 
members of the Diet had gone home. It was not regularly 
submitted to, nor discussed and voted on, by the Diet, nor 
signed by the Chancellor, but secured by a sort of surprise. 2 
On Trinity Sunday, May 26, Aleander went with the Latin 
and German copy to church, and induced the Emperor to 
sign both after high mass, "with his pious hand." The 

1 Aleander reports, May 5: " Poi me fit commexso per Cesar et el ConsiUo 
(the imperial council), che io stesso faccsse el decreto, con quelle piu jitstifi- 
cationi si potesxe, acclocJie il popolo se contentasxe." 

2 "Das Edict," says Ranke (i. 342), "ward den Stdnden nicht in Mirer 
Versammluny vorgeleyt ; keiner neuen Deliberation ward es unterworfen ; 
unerwartet, in der kaiserlichen Behausuny bekamen sie Kunde d<(i on, nnch- 
dem man nichts versaumt, um sie yiinstiy zu stinunen ; die ttilW.inn j d<-s- 
selben, die nicht einmal formell yenannt iverden kann, ward ihnen durch 
eine Art von Ueberraschuny abgewonnen." 


Emperor said in French, " Now you will be satisfied." 
44 Yes," replied the legate in the same language, "but much 
more satisfied will lie the Holy See and all Christendom, and 
will thank God for such a good, holy, and religious Emperor." 

The edict is not so long, but as turgid, bombastic, intoler 
ant, tierce, and cruel, as the Pope s bull of excommunication. 2 
It gave legal force to the bull within the German Empire. 
It denounces Luther as a devil in the dress of a monk, who 
had gathered a mass of old and new heresies into one pool, 
and pronounces upon him the ban and re-ban. 3 It commands 
the burning, and forbids the printing, publication, and sale, 
of his books, the sheltering and feeding of his person, and 
that of his followers, and directs the magistrates to seize him 
wherever he may be found, and to hand him over to the Em 
peror, to be dealt with according to the penal laws against 
heretics. At the same time the whole press of the empire 
was put under strict surveillance. 4 

This was the last occasion on which the mediaeval union of 
the secular empire with the papacy was expressed in ollicial 
form so as to make the German emperor the executor of the 
decrees of the bishop of Rome. The yravamina of the nation 
were unheeded, llutteii wrote: u l am ashamed of my fa 
therland." 5 

1 Dispatch of May 20. IJriccjer. I. 224. The edict appeared in print on 
the following Thursday, May :;o, and on Friday the Emperor left Worms. 

Aleander himself calls h more terriMe than any previous edict (c".s) lior- 
ribilf i/ntinto mni <ilt>-<> <<litt<>), June 27, 1">21. Briefer, I. 211. Jlanke says 
(I. }4 -}): " A .x wnr .s^ .</// r/, .so rnturhieilcn wic nioylich. * 

3 !>;> Ai-ht int l Altertn-ht. The A<-/,t is the civil counterpart of the eccle 
siastical excommunication and excludes the victim from all protection of 
the law. The Afn i-nrftt or O ^rncftt follows if the A<-l,t remains without 
effect. It is in the (ierman definition <li<- ro///. /c Fri<-<l- nn<l Itccfttslos- wlcr 
Voye{frei-Erkl<irunri. The imperial A<-f,l is called the / />/(.*</</</. 

Seethe edict in full in Waleh. XV. ^L *;4-J-JSu. It was pul.lished otli- 
cially in Latin and < ierman. and translated into the Ian images of the Dutch 
and Fn-ncli dominions of ( harles. Aleander himself, as he says, prepared 
the French translation. 

6 Letter to Pirkhciiner, May 1, 1021 : " Me jiudtrv incli>it patria ." 
Opvru II. :>W. 


Thus Luther was outlawed by Church and State, con 
demned by the Pope, the Emperor, the universities, cast out 
of human society, and left exposed to a violent death. 

But he had Providence and the future on his side. The 
verdict of the Diet was not the verdict of the nation. 

The departure of the Emperor through the Netherlands to 
Spain, where he subdued a dangerous insurrection, his subse 
quent wars with Francis in Italy, the victorious advance of 
the Turks in Hungary, the protection of Luther by the Elec 
tor Frederick, and the rapid spread of Protestant doctrines, 
these circumstances, combined to reduce the imperial edict, 
as well as the papal bull, to a dead letter in the greater 
part of Germany. The empire was not a centralized mon 
archy, but a loose confederation of seven great electorates, 
a larger number of smaller principalities, and free cities, each 
with an ecclesiastical establishment of its own. The love of 
individual independence among the rival states and cities was 
stronger than the love of national union ; and hence it was 
difficult to enforce the decisions of the Diet against a dis- 


senting minority or even a single recalcitrant member. An 
attempt to execute the edict in electoral Saxony or the free 
cities by military force would have kindled the flame of civil 
war which no wise and moderate ruler would be willing to 
risk without imperative necessity. Charles was an earnest 
Roman Catholic, but also a shrewd statesman who had to 
consult political interests. Even the Elector Albrecht of 
Mainz prevented, as far as he could, the execution of the 
bull and ban in the dioceses of Mainz, Magdeburg, and Hal- 
berstadt. lie did not sign the edict as chancellor of the 
empire. 1 Capito, his chaplain and private counselor, de 
scribed him in a letter to Zwingli, Aug. 4, 1521, as a 
promoter of * the gospel," who would not permit that Lu- 

1 Janssen, II. 208 sq. : "Albrecht muiwfe utrh beurjen ror Luther, dcr 
Primus vur dan excommunicirten Jk/ouc/i, weic/ivr ikiu mit Enthullunyen 


thcr be attacked on the pulpit. And this was the prelate 
who had been intrusted by the Pope with the sale of indul 
gences. Such a change had been wrought in public senti 
ment in the short course of four years. 

The settlement of the religious question was ultimately 
left to the several states, and depended very much upon the 
religious preferences and personal character of the civil 
magistrate. Saxony, Hesse, Brandenburg, the greater part 
of Northern Germany, also the Palatinate, Wurtemberg, 
Niirnberg, Frankfurt, Strassburg, and Ulm, embraced Prot 
estantism in whole or in part ; while Southern and Western 
Germany, especially Bavaria and Austria, remained predomi 
nantly Human Catholic. But it required a long and bloody 
struggle before Protestantism acquired equal legal rights 
with Romanism, and the Pope protests to this day against 
the Treaty of Westphalia which finally secured those rights. 

59. State of Public Opinion. Popular Literature. 

K. II.ViKv: I><r Geist dcr Reformation vn<l seine Gcyensiitze. Erlancon, 
184:>. IM. I. l.~>s sqq. JANSSKX, II. 181-1 .7, gives extracts from revo 
lutionary pamphlets to disparage the cause of the Reformation. 

Among the most potent causes which defeated the ban of 
the empire, and helped the triumph of Protestantism, was the 
teeming ephemeral literature which appeared between 1521 
and 1524, and did the work of the periodical newspaper press 
of our days, in seasons of public excitement. In spite of the 
prohibition of unauthorized printing by the edict of Worms, 
Germany was inundated by a Hood of books, pamphlets, and 
leaflets in favor of true and false freedom. They created a 
public opinion which prevented the execution of the law. 

Luther had started this popular literary warfare by his 
ninety-five Theses. He was by far the most original, fertile, 
and effective controversialist and pamphleteer of his age. 
He commanded the resources of genius, learning, courage, 
eloquence, wit, humor, irony, and ridicule, and had, notwith- 


standing his many physical infirmities, an astounding power 
of work. He could express the deepest thought in the clear 
est and strongest language, and had an abundant supply of 
juicy and forcible epithets. 1 His very opponents had to* im 
itate his German speech if they wished to reach the masses, 
and to hit the nail on the head. He had a genial heart, but 
also a most violent temper, and used it as a weapon for 
popular effect. He felt himself called to the rough work of 
"removing stumps and stones, cutting away thistles and 
thorns, and clearing the wild forests." He found aid and 
comfort in the severe language of the prophets. " The 
"Word of God," he says, "is a sword, a war, a destruction; 
it falls upon the children of Ephraim like a lioness in the 
forest." He thoroughly understood the wants and tastes of 
his countrymen who preferred force to elegance, and the 
club to the dagger. Foreigners, who knew him only from 
his Latin writings, could not account for his influence. 

Roman historians, in denouncing his polemics, are apt 
to forget the fearful severity of the papal bull, the edict of 
Worms, and the condemnatory decisions of the universities. 2 

His pen was powerfully aided by the pencil of his friend 
Lucas Cranach, the court-painter of Frederick the Wise. 

Melanchthon had no popular talent, but he employed his 
scholarly pen in a Latin apology for Luther " against the 
furious decree of the Parisian theologasters." 3 The Sor- 

1 Krtiftwdrtcr, as the Germans call them. 

2 Janssen says (II. 181 and 193): " Den Ton fur die ganze damaliye pole- 
niische Literatur gab Luther an, wie durch seine friiheren Schriftcn, so auch 
durch die neuen, welclie er von der Wart-bury aus in die Welt schickte." 
Then he quotes a number of the coarsest outbursts of Luther s wrath, and 
his disparaging remarks on some books of the New Testament (the Eusebian 
Antilegomena), all of which, however, are disowned by the Lutheran Church, 
and more than counterbalanced by his profound reverence for, and submis 
sion to, the undoubted writings (the Ilomologumena). (See (5, pp. 16 sqq. 

3 " Advc-rsus furiosum Parisiensium theoloyastrorwn Decretum pro Lu- 
thrro Apologia, 1521. In the " Corpus Reformat.," vol. I. 398-410. A copy 
of the original edition is in the Royal Library at Berlin. An extract, in Carl 
Schmidt s Philipp Afelanchthon, pp. 55 sqq. 

50. STATE OF rrr.Lic OPINION. 323 

bonne, hitherto the most famous theological faculty, which in 
the davs (f the reformatory councils had stood up for the 
cause of reform, followed the example of the universities of 
Louvain and Cologne, and denounced Luther during the ses 
sions of the Diet of Worms, April 1 ">, 1 ")iM, as an arch-heretic 
who had renewed and intensified the blasphemous errors of 
the Manicha-ans, Hussites, Beghards, Cathari, Waldcuscs, 
Ebionites, Arians, etc., and who should lie destroyed bv lire 
rather than refuted by arguments. 1 Kek translated the 
decision at once into German. Melanchthon dared to charge 
the faculty of Paris with apostasy from Christ to Ari>totle, 
and from biblical theology to scholastic sophistry. Luther 
translated the Apology into German at the Wartburg. and, 
finding it too mild, he added to it some strokes of his 
"peasant s axe." 2 

l. lrich vou Ilutten was almost equal to Luther in literary 
power, eloquence, wit, and sarcasm, as well as in courage, 
and aided him with all his might from the Kbernburg during 
his trial at Worms; but he weakened his cause by want of 
principle. lie had previously republished and ridiculed the 
Pope s bull of excommunication. lie now attacked the edict 
of Worms, and wrote invectives against its authors, the 
papal legates, and its supporters, the bishops. 3 lie told the 
former how foolish it was to proceed with such impudence 
and violence against Luther, in opposition to the spirit of 
the age, that the time of revenge would soon come; thai the 

1 Dctcrminntio Theologorum Purinicnuittni *y"r Doctrina Luther HUM. 
"Corp. Ill-form." I. :W,-:jss. 

2 Mtin lii nr Philijip," he says *//< / ifnioi [<lcn r/rnfmi Purixi r Kudu] 
90hl meixtcrlirli ycantwurtet, hat Hie <it,i /./-// zn sunff tin>ii riifirt ,</ >mt 
dem lei<-ti(<ii !!<> , I iit>> rlnnfrn ; /,/, xd,p ,,/,/, !<-fi muss mil lit- lini , ,-,1 i.rt 
iiber dir yroh -H lllnckc koutiiun." At the saint- tinif then- ai iii-ari-il an 
Ooymoiis satire against the Paris theologians in the style of the A/ /.sfuJa- 
Ob*r>ir<trnin Virnrnm. See Schiniilt. /. . p. :>>. 

* 7*i IH ron. Ale<in<lruin ct Mitrinnin Cnrarciolum Orfttorca Leonis X. 
apii l \ ormnr.tam Inr<rtirti> x!n</nl<i. In Citr<liiutles, <y>/.s % "/>o.s i-l Succr- 
dot> , L ltlifriiiit Vurmacice oppitynuntcN, Inm-ilrn. .\<l ( uruluin Imp. pro 
Luthero :xh<jrt<it<jria, Sec Strauss, L irlcU c. Uuttvn, pp. oUT sij. 


Germans were \)y no means so blind and indifferent as they 
imagined ; that the young Emperor would soon come to a 
better knowledge. He indignantly reminded Aleander of 
his shameful private utterance (which was also reported to 
Luther by Spalatin), that, if the Germans should shake off 
the papal yoke, Rome would take care to sow so much seed 
of discord among them that they would eat each other up. 
He reproached the archbishops and higher clergy for using 
force instead of persuasion, the secular magistrate instead of 
the word of Christ against Luther. He told them that they 
were no real priests; that they had bought their dignities ; 
that they violated common morality ; that they were carnal, 
worldly, avaricious , that they were unable or ashamed to 
preach the gospel which condemned their conduct, and that 
if God raised a preacher like Luther, they sought to oppress 
him. But the measure is full. " Away with you, 1 he ex 
claims, "ye unclean hogs, away from the pure fountains! 
Away with you, wicked traffickers, from the sanctuary! 
Touch no longer the altars with your profane hands ! What 
right have ye to waste the pious benefactions of our fathers 
in luxury, fornication, and vain pomp, while many honest 
and pious people are starving? The measure is full. See 
ye not that the air of freedom is stirring, that men, dis 
gusted with the present state of things, demand improve 
ment ? Luther and I may perish at your hands, but what 
of that? There are many more Luthers and Iluttens who 
will take revenge, and raise a new and more violent 

Pie added, however, to the second edition, a sort of 
apologetic letter to Albrecht, the head of the German arch 
bishops, his former friend and patron, assuring him of his 
continued friendship, and expressing regret that he should 
have been alienated from the protection of the cause of 
progress and liberty. 

In a different spirit Hans Sachs, the pious poet-shoemaker 


of Numberg, 1 wrote many ephemeral compositions in prose 
and poetry lor tin- cause of Luther and tlie gospel. lie met 
Luther at Augsburg in 1518, collected till 15:2:2 forty hooks 
in his favor, and published in 1523 a poem of seven hundred 
verses under the title: "Die Wittenberyiseh Nachtiyall, l>(e 
man jetzt Jtort liberall" and with the concluding words: 
tk Christus d//i<itor, Papa pecccttor." It was soon followed l>v 
four polemical dialogues in prose. 

Among tlie most popular pamphleteers on the Protestant 
side were a fanner named u Karsthaiis," who labored in the 
Rhine country between Strnssburg and Basel, and his imi 
tator, kv Xeukurstlians." Many pamphlets were anonymous 
or pseudonymous. 

It is a significant fact, that the Reformation was defended 
by so many laymen. All the great German classics who 
arose in more recent times (Klopstock, Lessing, Herder, 
Goethe, Schiller, Uhland, Riickert), as well as philosophers 
(Leibnitz, Knnt, Fichte, Sclielling, Hegel, Herhart, Lotze), 
are Protestants, at least nominally, and could not have 
grown on papal soil. 

The newness and freshness of this fugitive popular lit 
erature called out by the Reformation, and especially by the 
edict of Worms, made it all the more effective. The people 
were hungry for intellectual and spiritual food, and the ap 
petite grew with tlie supply. 

The polemical productions of that period are usually brief, 
pointed, and aimed at the common-sense of the masses. They 
abound in strong arguments, rude wit, and coarse abuse. 
They plead the canst; of freedom against oppression, of the 
laity against priestcraft and monkery. A favorite form of 

1 Characteristic for his poetry is tin; well-known rhyme (which is, how 
ever, nut found in his works) : 

" linn* Sdchx war fin Srhuh- 
Mii -licr nn l ! (( <lnzn." 

A now edition of his poems appeared at Stuttgart, 1STO sqq. He figures 
prominently in Kuulbach s picture of the Reformation. 


composition was the dialogue in which a peasant or a labor 
ing-man defeats an ecclesiastic. 

The Devil figures prominently in league with the Pope, 
sometimes as his servant, sometimes as his master. Very 
often the Pope is contrasted with Christ as his antipode. 
The Pope, says one of the controversialists, proclaimed the 
terrible bull of condemnation of Luther and all heretics on 
the day commemorative of the institution of the holy com 
munion ; and turned the divine mercy into human wrath, 
brotherly love into persecuting hatred, the very blessing into 
a curse. 

St. Peter also appears often in these productions : he stands 
at the gate of heaven, examining priests, monks, and popes, 
whether they are fit to enter, and decides in most cases 
against them. Here is a specimen : A fat and drunken monk 
knocks at the gate, and is angry that he is not at once 
admitted; Peter tells him first to get sober, and laughs at 
his foolish dress. Then he catechises him ; the monk enu 
merates all his fasts, self-mortifications, and pious exer 
cises ; Peter orders that his belly be cut open, and, behold ! 
chickens, wild game, fish, omelets, wine, and other contents 
come forth and bear witness against the hypocrite, who is 
forthwith sent to the place of punishment. 

The writer of a pamphlet entitled " Doctor Martin Luther s 
Passion," draws an irreverent parallel between Luther s treat 
ment by the Diet, with Christ s crucifixion : Luther s entry 
into Worms is compared to Christ s entry into Jerusalem, the 
Diet to the Sanhedrin, Archbishop Albrecht to Caiaphas, the 
papal legates to the Pharisees, the Elector of Saxony to Peter, 
Euk and Cochleeus to the false witnesses, the Archbishop of 
Treves to Pilate, the German nation to Pilate s wife ; at last 
Luther s books and likeness are thrown into the fire, but his 
likeness will not burn, and the spectators exclaim, u Verily, 
he is a Christian." 

The same warfare was going on in German Switzerland. 


Nicolas Manuel, a poet and painter (died 1530), in a carnival 
play which was enacted at l>erne, 1522, introduces first the 
whole hierarchy, confessing one after another their sins, and 
expressing regret that they now are to be stopped by the ris 
ing opposition of the people; then the various classes of lav- 
ineii attack the priests, expose their vices, and refute their 
sophistries ; and at last Peter and Paul decide in favor of 
the laity, and charge the clergy with llatly contradicting the 
teaching of Christ and the Apostles. 1 

These pamphlets and fugitive papers were illustrated by 
rude woodcuts and caricatures of obnoxious persons, which 
added much to their popular effect. Popes, cardinals, and 
bishops are represented in their clerical costume, but with 
faces of wolves or foxes, and surrounded by geese praying a 
Paternnxter or Avc Maria. The " Passion of Christ and Anti 
christ " has twenty-six woodcuts, from the elder Lucas Cranach 
or his school, which exhibit the contrast between Christ and 
his pretended vicar in parallel pictures : in one Christ declines 
the crown of this world, in the other the Pope refuses to 
open the gate to the Emperor (at Canossa) ; in one Christ 
wears the crown of thorns, in the other this Pope the triple 
crown of gold and jewels; in one Christ washes the feet of 
his disciples, in the other the Pope suffers emperors and kings 
to kiss his toe ; in one Christ preaches the glad tidings to the 
poor, in the other the Pope feasts with his cardinals at a rich 
banquet ; in one Christ expels the profane traffickers, in the 
other the Pope sits in the temple of God ; in one Christ rides 
meekly on an ass into Jerusalem, in the other the Pope and 
IILS cardinals ride on fiery steeds into hell. 2 

Tin- rontrovcrsial literature of the Roman-Catholic Church 
was far behind the Protestant in ability and fertility. The 
most ]npular and effective writer on the Roman side was the 
Franciscan monk and crowned poet, Thomas Murncr. He 

1 SIT (inineison s NicolauK Mnnticln Lehcn uml \Vt-rke (18. *7), ]>]>. >;5()-:M2. 

2 l iix*iintl Clirlfttl uii l Antirlirlxti, mil Lnth<-r x Xnchrcdi , lf>21, in tht^ 
Frankf. uil., LXI11., 240- 24s. Luther accompanied the pictures with texts. 


was an Alsatian, and lived in Strassburg, afterwards at 
Luzern, and died at Heidelberg (1537). He had formerly, in 
his Narrenbescliworuny (1512) and other writings, unmerci 
fully chastised the vices of all classes, including clergy and 
monks, and had sided with Reuchlin in his controversy with 
the Dominicans, but in 1520 he turned against Luther, and 
assailed his cause in a poetical satire : " Vom yrosscn luther- 
ischen Narren wie ilm Doctor Murner beschworen hat, 1522^ 1 

1 Newly edited by II. Kurz, Zurich, 1848. Janssen makes much use of 
this poem (II. 123-128, 100, 415, 410). Murner thus describes the Protestant 
attack on the sacraments : 

" Die Mess, die sol nim yclten 

1m Leben noch im Tod. 
Die Sacrament sie scheltcn, 

Die seien uns nit Not. 
Fiinf hont sie gar vernichtet, 

Die andcni Ion sie ston, 
Dermasaen zuyerichtet, 

Dass sie auch bald zeryon." 

Of Luther s doctrine of the general priesthood of the laity he says: 

" Wir fte in all Pfaffen warden, 
Beld Weiber und die Man, 
}} iewol uv> hant kcin Ordcn 
Ktin Weihe ynomen an." 



TO THE PEASANTS WAR, A.D. i:^i-i:^:>. 
GO. A New Phase in the History of the Reformation. 

AT Worms, Luther stood on the height of his protest 
against Rome. The negative part of his work was com 
pleted: the tyranny of popery over Western Christendom 
was broken, the conscience was set free, and the way opened 
for a reconstruction of the Church on the basis of the New 
Testament. What he wrote afterwards against Rome was 
merely a repetition and re-affirmation. 

On his return to Wittenberg, he had a more difficult task 
before him: to effect a positive reformation of faith and dis 
cipline, worship and ceremonies. A revolution is merely 
destructive and emancipative : a reformation is constructive 
and affirmative ; it removes abuses and corruptions, but saves 
the foundation, and builds on it a new structure. 

In this home-work Luther was as conservative and churchly 
as he had been radical and unchurchly in his war against the 
foreign foe. The connecting link between the two periods 
Was his faith in Christ and the ever-living word of God, 
with which he began and ended his public labors. 

He now raised his protest against the abuse of liberty in 
his own camp. A sifting process was necessary. Division 
and confusion broke out among his friends and followers. 
Many of them exceeded all bounds of wisdom and modera 
tion ; while others, frightened by the excesses, returned to 
the fold of the mother Church. The (ierman nation itself 
Was split on the (|iiestion of the old or new religion, and 


remains, ecclesiastically, divided to this day ; but the politi 
cal unification and reconstruction of the German Empire with 
a Protestant head, instead of the former Roman-Catholic 
emperor, may be regarded as a remote result of the Reforma 
tion, without which it could never have taken place. And it 
is a remarkable providence, that this great event of 1870 was 
preceded by the Vatican Council and the decree of papal in 
fallibility, and followed by the overthrow of the temporal 
power of the Pope and the political unification of Italy with 
Rome as the capital. 

Before Luther entered upon the new phase in his career, 
he had a short rest on what he called his " Patmos " (Rev. 
1 : 9), and his "wilderness." It is the most romantic, as his 
stand at Worms is the most heroic, chapter in his eventful 

61. Luther on the Wartlurg. 1521-1522. 

I. LUTHER S Letters, from April 28, 1521, to March 7, 1522, in DE WETTE, 

vol. I. 588-005; II. 1-141. Very full and very characteristic. WALCII, 
XV. 2324-2402. 

II. C. KOIILER: Luther auf der Wartburg. Eisenach, 1798. A. WITZ- 
SCIIELL: Luther & Aufenthalt auf der Wartbury. Wien, 1870. J. G. 
MORRIS: Luther at Wartburg and Coburg. Philadelphia, 1882. 

III. MARIIEIXEKE, Chap. X. (I. 270 sqq.). MERLE D AUBIGXE, Bk. IX., 
chs. I. and II. HAGENBACH, III. 105 sqq. FISHER, p. 112. KOSTLIN, 
I. 408-525. 

Luther left Worms after a stay of ten days, April 2G, 1521, 
at ten o clock in the morning, quietly, in the same company 
with which he had made his entrance under the greatest 
popular commotion and expectation. His friend Schurf went 
along. The imperial herald joined him at Oppenheim so as 
not to attract notice. 

In a letter to his friend Cranach, dated Frankfurt, April 
28, he thus summarizes the proceedings of the Diet: "Have 
you written these books? Yes. Will you recant? No. 
Then get thee hence ! O we blind Germans, how childish we 
are to allow ourselves to be so miserably fooled by the Roman- 

Gl. LUTHER OX THE WARTBURG. 1521-1522. 331 

ists ! " l In the same letter lie takes leave of his Wittenberg 
friends, and intimates that he would he hidden for a while, 
though he did not know where. lie says that he would 
rather have suffered death from the tyrants, especially "the 
furious Duke George," but he could not despise the counsel 
of good people. "A little while, and ye behold me no 
more; and again a little while, and ye shall see me (John 
It): !<!). I hope it will be so with me. Hut God s will, the 
best of all, be done in heaven and on earth." 

At Friedberg he dismissed the herald, and gave him a 
Latin letter to the Emperor, and a German letter of the same 
import to the Estates. He thanked the former for the safe- 
conduet, and defended his course at Worms. He eould not 
trust in the decision of one man or maiiv men when God s 
word and eternal interests were at stake, but was still willing 


to recant if refuted from the Scriptures. 2 

At Hersfeld he was hospitably entertained in the Hencdic- 
tine convent by the Abbot C rato, and urged to preach. He 
did so in spite of the Emperor s prohibition, obeying God 
rather than men. "I never consented," he savs, "to tie up 
God s word. This is a condition beyond my power." 3 lie 
preached also at Eisenach, but under protest of the priest 
in charge of the parish. Several of his companions parted 
from him there, and proceeded in the direction of Gotha 
and Wittenberg. 

From Eisenach lie started with Amsdorf and Petzensteiner 
for Mo hra to see his relations. He spent a night with his 
uncle Heinz, and preached on the next Sunday morning. 
He resumed his journey towards Altenstein and Walters- 
hausen, accompanied by some of his relatives. On the 4th 
of May, a company of armed horsemen suddenly appeared 
from the woods, stopped his carriage, amidst cursing and 
swearing, pulled him out, put him on horseback, hurried 

1 I).- W.-tt. . I. :i8s. * I),- Write. I. r>s<>. c,i>o. 

8 bee Lis letter to Spakitin, May 14, in be \YetU\ II. (i. 


away with him in full speed, and brought him about mid 
night to the Wartburg, where he was to be detained as a 
noble prisoner of state in charge of Captain von Berlepsch, 
the governor of the castle. 

The scheme had been wisely arranged in Worms by the 
Elector Frederick, whom Aleander calls " the fox of Saxony." 
He wavered between attachment to the old faith and inclina 
tion to the new. He could not be sure of Luther s safety 
beyond the term of three weeks when the Emperor s safe- 
conduct expired ; he did not wish to disobey the Emperor, 
nor, on the other hand, to sacrifice the reformer, his own 
subject, and the pride of his university. He therefore deemed 
it best to withdraw him for a season from the public eye. 
Melanchthon characterizes him truly when he says of Fred 
erick : " He w r as not one of those who would stifle changes in 
their very birth. He was subject to the will of God. lie 
read the writings which were put forth, and would not 
permit any power to crush w r hat he believed to be true." 

The secret was strictly kept. For several months even 
John, the Elector s- brother, did not know Luther s abode, 
and thought that he was in one of Sickingen s castles. Con 
flicting rumors went abroad, and found credence among the 
crowds who gathered in public places to hear the latest news. 
Some said, He is dead; others, He is imprisoned, and cruelly 
treated. Albrecht Diirer, the famous painter, who was at 
that time at Antwerp, and esteemed Luther as "a man 
enlightened by the Holy Spirit and a confessor of the true 
Christian faith," entered in his diary on Pentecost, 1521, the 
prayer that God may raise up another man in his place, and 
rill him with the Holy Spirit to heal the wounds of the 

The Wartburg is a stately castle on a hill above Eisenach, 
in the finest part of the Thuringian forest. It combines 
reminiscences of mediaeval poetry and piety with those of 
the Reformation. It was the residence of the Landgraves 

Gl. LUTHER ON THE WARTBCRG. 1521-1522. 333 

of Thuringia from 1073 to 1440. Tliere the must famous 
Minnesangers, Walther von der Vogelweide, and Wolfram 
von Eschenbach, graced tlie court of Hermann I. (111)0- 
1217); there St. Elizabeth (1207-1231), wife of Landgrave 
Ludwig, developed her extraordinary virtues of humility and 
charity, and began those ascetic self-mortifications which 
her heartless and barbarous confessor, Conrad of Marburg, 
imposed upon her. But the most interesting relics of the past 
are the Lutherstube and the adjoining Reformationszimmer. 
The plain furniture of the small room which the Reformer oc 
cupied, is still preserved : a table, a chair, a bedstead, a small 
bookcase, a drinking-tankard, and the knightly armor of 
Junker Georg, his assumed name. The famous ink-spot is 
seen no more, and the story is not authentic. 1 On the 
Wartburg the German students celebrated, in October, 1817, 
the third jubilee of the Reformation ; on the Wart burg Dr. 
Merle d Aubigne of Geneva received the inspiration for his 
eloquent history of the Reformation, which had a wider cir 
culation, at least in the English translation, than any other 
book on church history; on the Wartburg the Eisenach 
Conference of the various Lutheran church-governments of 
Germany inaugurates its periodical sessions for the con 
sultative discussion of matters of common interest, as the 
revision of the Luther-Bible. The castle was handsomely 
restored and decorated in mediaeval style, in 1847. 

Luther s sojourn in this romantic solitude extended through 
nearly eleven months, and alternated between recreation and 
work, health and sickness, high courage and deep despond 
ency. Considering that he there translated the New Testa 
ment, it was the most useful year of his life. He gives a full 

1 On my last visit, July 31, ISSfl, I saw only scratches and disfigurements 
on tht; wall where the ink-spot was formerly pointed out. " No old report 
er," says Kostlin, I. 4~ J sj., "knows any thing about the spot of the ink 
stand on the wall; the story arose probably from a spot of a different sort. 
Sender saw such an iuk-spot at Coburg. The legend, however, embodies a 
true idea. 


description of it in letters to his Wittenberg friends, espe 
cially to Spalatin and Melanchthon, which were transmitted 
by secret messengers, and dated from " Patmos," or t% the 
wilderness," from u the region of the air," or " the region of 
the birds." 

He was known and treated during this episode as Knight 
George. He exchanged the monastic gown for the dress of a 
gentleman, let his hair and beard grow, wore a coat of mail, 
a sword, and a golden chain, and had to imitate courtly man 
ners. He was served by two pages, who brought the meals 
to his room twice a day. His food was much better than he 
had been accustomed to as a monk, and brought on dyspepsia 
and insomnia. He enjoyed the singing of the birds, u sweetly 
lauding God day and night with all their strength." He 
made excursions with an attendant. Sometimes he took a 
book along, but was reminded that a knight and a scholar 
were different beings. He engaged in conversation on the 
way, with priests and monks, about ecclesiastical affairs, and 
the uncertain whereabouts of Luther, till he was requested 
to go on. He took part in the chase, but indulged in theo 
logical thoughts among the huntsmen and animals. * We 
caught a few hares and partridges," he said, "a worthy occu 
pation for idle people." The nets and dogs reminded him 
of the arts of the Devil entangling and pursuing poor human 
souls. Pie sheltered a hunted hare, but the dogs tore it to 
pieces ; this suggested to him the rage of the Devil and the 
Pope to destroy those whom he wished to preserve. It 
would be better, he thought, to hunt bears and wolves. 

He had many a personal encounter with the Devil, whose 
existence was as certain to him as his own. More than once 
he threw the inkstand at him not literally, but spiritually. 
His severest blow at the archfiend was the translation of the 
New Testament. His own doubts, carnal temptations, evil 
thoughts, as well as the dangers threatening him and his 
work from his enemies, projected themselves into appari- 

Gl. LUTHER ON THE WARTBURG. 1521-1522. 335 

tions of the prince of darkness. lie heanl his noises at 
night, in a chest, in a bag of nuts, and on the staircase "as 
if a hundred barrels were rolled from top to bottom. Once 
he saw him in the shape of a big black dog lying in his bed; 
he threw the creature out of the window; but it did not 
bark, and disappeared. 1 Sometimes he resorted to jokes. 
The Devil, he said, will bear any thing better than to be 
despised and laughed at. 2 

Luther was brought up in all the mediaeval superstitions 
concerning demons, ghosts, witches, and sorcerers. His im 
agination clothed ideas in concrete, massive forms. The 
Devil was to him the personal embodiment of all evil and 
mischief in the world. Hence he figures very largely in his 
theology and religious experience. 3 He is the direct antipode 
of God, and the archfiend of Christ and of men. As God is 
pure love, so the Devil is pure selfishness, hatred, and envy. 
He is endowed with high intellectual gifts, as bad men often 
surpass good men in prudence and understanding, lie was 
originally an archangel, but moved by pride and envy against 
the Son of God, whose incarnation and saving work he fore 
saw, he rose in rebellion against it. He commands an 
organized army of fallen angels and bad men in constant 
conflict with God and the good angels. He is the god of 

1 In Goethe s F<ntxt, Mcphistopheles appears in the disguise of a poodle, 
the cmun infi.rnuy, and is conjured by tin- sign of a cross: 

" Hist >ln, flcitclli; 
Kin Fliii htllwi <ler IIollc? 
S<; Kkfi i/fV.x.s Zetrfo ii, 
Item nic nirft h( -iii/i-n 
l)tt- xi liw trzt ii ^children." 

2 " Verachtung kann <l<r xtofzc hofiiihrtiyc Gvlut nicht l>i<len. Tixch- 
reden. (LX. ">. Krl.-Frkf. !.) 

In the alphahctiral index of the Erlanpon-Frankfnrt edition of Luther s 
Gennan Works, the title T< "f<l (ills no less than ten closely printed pages (vol. 
LXVII. Ji. I-li."). 1 )). His Table-Talk on the Devil occupies about 1">0 paues 
in vols. IJX. and I,X. It is instructive and interesting to read il through. 
Michrl.-t devotes a whole chapter to this subject (pp. lil .i-^U). For a 
systeiuatic view, see Kostlin, Luther s Theuloyic, vol. II. - Jl J 3<j. ; Uol sqq. 


this world, and knows how to rule it. He has power over 
nature, and can make thunder and lightning, hail and earth 
quake, fleas and bed-bugs. He is the ape of God. He can 
imitate Christ, and is most dangerous in the garb of an angel 
of light. He is most busy where the Word of God is preached. 
He is proud and haughty, although he can appear most hum 
ble. He is a liar and a murderer from the beginning. He 
understands a thousand arts. He hates men because they 
are creatures of God. He is everywhere around them, and 
tries to hurt and seduce them. He kindles strife and enmity. 
He is the author of all heresies and persecutions. He invented 
popery, as a counterpart of the true kingdom of God. He 
inflicts trials, sickness, and death upon individuals. He 
tempts them to break the Ten Commandments, to doubt 
God s word, and to blaspheme. He leads into infidelity and 
despair. He hates matrimony, mirth, and music. He can 
not bear singing, least of all "spiritual songs." 1 He holds 
the human will captive, and rides it as Ids donkey. He can 
quote Scripture, but only as much of it as suits his purpose. 
A Christian should know that the Devil is nearer him than 
his coat or shirt, yea, than his own skin. Luther reports that 
he often disputed with the Devil in the night, about the state 
of his soul, so earnestly that he himself perspired profusely, 
and trembled. Once the Devil told him that he was a great 
sinner. " I knew that long ago," replied Luther, " tell me 
something new. Christ has taken my sins upon himself, and 
forgiven them long ago. Now grind your teeth." At other 
times lie returned the charge and tauntingly asked him, 
" Holy Satan, pray for me," or, " Physician, cure thyself." 
The Devil assumes visible forms, and appears as a dog or a 

1 " Der Tenfd i*t tin trauriger Geist," he says in his Table-Talk (LX. 60), 
" v.n<l macht traurirje Lcute ; darum knnn cr FriJhlichkeit nicht Icidcn. 
Dafter kommt s auch, dass er von der Musica aufs Weiteste fleuyct ; er 
bleibt nicht, wcnn man sinyt, sonderlich geistliche Lieder. Also lindcrte 
David nut seiner Harfen dem Saul seine Anfechtuny, da ihn der Teiifel 

Gl. LUTHER ON THE WARTBURG. 1521-1522. 337 

hoc: or a oat, or as a flame or star, or as a man with horns. 
He is noisy and boisterous. 1 He is at the bottom of all 
witchcraft and ghost-trickery. He steals little children and 
substitutes others in their place, who are mere lumps of ilesh 
and tonm-nt the parents, but die young. 2 Luther was dis 
posed to trace many media-val miracles of the Roman Catho 
lic Church to the agency of Satan. He believed in Jcemones 
incubos ct succitbos. 

Hut, ai trr all, the Devil has no real power over believers. 
He hates prayer, and ilees from the cross and from the Word 
of God as from a flaming fire. If you cannot expel him by 
texts of Holy Scripture, the best way is to jeer and flout 
him. A [lions nun once scared him away by simply saying: 
" Christiana sum." Christ has slain him, and will cast him 
out at last into the fire of hell. Hence Luther sings in his 
battle hymn, 

"And let (ho Prince of ill 
Look grim as e er h- will, 
He harms us not a whit: 
For why ? His doom is writ, 
One little word shall slay him. 

Luther was at times deeply dejected in spirit. He wrote 
to Melanchthon, July 13, under the influence of dyspepsia 
which paints every thing in the darkest colors: u You elevate 
me too high, and fall into the serious error of giving me too 
much credit, as if I were absorbed in God s cause. This 
high opinion of voiirs confounds and racks me, when I see 
myself insensible, hardened, sunk in idleness, alas! seldom 
in prayer, and not venting one groan over God s Church. 
My unsubdued flesh burns me with devouring fin 1 . In short, 
I who ought to be eaten up with the spirit, am devoured by 

1 Ein Pftltfr-tin l Rumprl-Gi-ixt. 

* ".So/f/c \\ -l,Mclh(il<je [or \\ tchsrlkin<1rr, changelings] nnd Kiilkropfe 
fujiponit Snt Hi in lorum tfrorum filim-uin, nnd playvt die Lrutr dtlntit. 
Denn diem- (i> inilt tint t/f-r .Sa/an, dn.i.i rr // Kinder autnoechnelt iind eincm 
fiir sem Kind vinen Teufel in die M icye/t Uyt." Erl. ed., LX. 41. 


the flesh, by luxury, indolence, idleness, somnolence. Is it 
that God has turned away from me, because you no longer 
pray for me ? You must take my place ; you, richer in God s 
gifts, and more acceptable in his sight. Here, a week has 
passed away since I put pen to paper, since I have prayed 
or studied, either vexed by fleshly cares, or by other tempta 
tions. If things do not improve, I will go to Erfurt without 
concealment; there you will see me, or I yon, for I must 
consult physicians or surgeons. Perhaps the Lord troubles 
me so much in order to draw me from this wilderness before 
the public." l 

Notwithstanding his complaints of illness and depression, 
and assaults from the evil spirit, he took the liveliest inter 
est in the events of the day, and was anxious to descend to 
the arena of conflict. He kept writing letters, books, and 
pamphlets, and sent them into the world. His literary activ 
ity during those few months is truly astounding, and con- 

/ O / O 

trasts strangely with his repeated lament that he had to sit 
idle at Patmos, and would rather be burned in the service of 
God than stagnate there. 

He had few books on the Wartburg. He studied the 
Greek and Hebrew Scriptures very diligently ; 2 he depended 
for news on the letters of his friends at Wittenberg ; and for 
his writings, on the resources of his genius. 

He continued his great Latin commentary on the Psalms, 
dwelling most carefully on Psalm 22 with reference to the 
crucifixion, and wrote special expositions of Psalms (>8 and 
37. He completed his book on the Magnificat of the Holy 
Virgin, in which he still expresses his full belief in her 
sinlessness, even her immaculate conception. He attacked 
auricular confession, which was now used as a potent power 
against the reading of Protestant books, and dedicated the 

1 Do Wotto, IT. 21 sq. 

" Bihlidm Gi tucuni et Ilcbruicam leyo." To Spalatin, May 14 (De 
Wctte, II. C). 

01. i.rTiiEii ON THE WAurnrnr,. 1521-1522. 339 

tract to Sickingen (June 1). lie resumed his sermons on 
the (Jospels and Epistles of tin- church year (KircJu npotstiUf), 
which were afterwards finished bv friends, and became one 
of the nnst popular books of devotion in Germany, lie 

declared it <>nee the best book lie ever wrote, one which 
even the Papists liked. 1 He replied in Latin to Latomus. 
a Louvaiu theologian. He attacked in Latin and German 
the doctrine of the mass, which is the very heart of Unman 
Catholic worship, and monastic vows, the foundation of the 
monastic system, lie dedicated the book against vows to 
his father who had objected to his becoming a monk. 

lie also dealt an effectual blow at Cardinal Albrecht of 
Main/., who had exposed in Halle a collection of nearly nine 
thousand wondrous relics (including the manna in the wil 
derness, the burning bush of Moses, and jars from the wed 
ding at Cana) to the view of pilgrims, with the promise of a 
"surpassing" 1 indulgence for attendance and a charitable 
contribution to the Collegiate Church. Luther disregarded 
the faet that his own pious Elector had arranged a similar 
exhibition in Wittenberg only a few years before, and pre 
pared a fierce protest against the "Idol of Indulgences" 
(October, 1521 ). Spalatin and the Klector protested against 
the publication, but lie wrote to Spalatin: " I will not put 
Up witli it. I will rather lose you and the prince himself, 
and everv living being. If I have stood up against the Pope, 
why should I yield to his creature? " At the same time he 
ftddressed a sharp letter to the archbishop (Dec. 1). and 
reminded him that by this time lie ought to know that indul 
gences were mere knavery and triekery ; that Luther was .still 
alive: that bishops, before punishing priests for marrying, 
better first expel their own mistresses. He threatened him 
with the issue of tin- bonk against the Idol of Halle. The 
archbishop submitted, and made a humble apology in a letter 

1 SOP Pn-far.- t.) the St. Louis e<l. uf Walrh, XI. (INS J), p. 1 s i-j.. and 
Kustlin, I. 4^>-l> J. 


of Dec. 21, which shows what a power Luther had acquired 
over him. 1 

62. Luther s Translation of the Bible. 

I. DR. MARTIN LUTHER S Bibeliibersetzung nach tier Irtzten Oriyinal-Aus- 

gabe, kritisch bearbeitet von II. E. BINDSEIL ioid II. A. XIKMKYKK. 
Halle, 1845-55, in 7 vols. 8. The X. T. in vols. and 7. A critical 
reprint of the last edition of Luther (1545). Xiemeyer died after the 
publication of the first volume. Coinp. the Probebibel (the revised 
Luther-Version), Ilalle, 1883. LUTHER S Sendbrief tow Doltnetxchf-n 
wnl Fiirbitte der Heiliyen (with a letter to Wenceslaus Link, Sept. 12, 
1030), in WALCII, XXI. 310 sqq., and the Erl. Frkf. eel., vol. LXV. 102- 
123. (Xot in De Wette s collection, because of its polemical char 
acter.) A defense of his version against the attacks of the Romanists. 
MATiiEsirs, in his thirteenth sermon on the Life of Luther. 

II. On the merits and history of Luther s version. The best works are by 
PALM (1772), PANZER (Vollstand. Gcsch. der deutxchen Bibcliibers. 

- Lv.thcrs, Xiirnb. 1783, 2d ed. 1791), WEIDEMAXN (1834), II. SCIIOTT 
(1835), BINDSEIL (1847), HOPF (1847), MONCKEBERG (1855 and 1801), 
KARL FROMMANN (1802), DORNER (1808), W. GRIMM (1874 and 1884), 
DUSTERDIECK (1882), KLEINERT (1883), Tn. SCIIOTT (1883), and the 
introduction to the Probcbibel (1883). See Lit. in 17, p. 103. 

III. On the pre-Lutheran German Bible, and Luther s relation to it. ED. 
REUSS: Die drutxchc Historicnbibel ror der Erfi.nd.uny deft Buchrrdrucks. 
Jena, 1855. Jos. KEHREIN (Rom. Cath.): Zur GeschicJitc der deutsrhen 
Bitx lubersetzuny ror Luther. Stuttgart, 1851. O. F. FRITZSCIIE in 
Ilerzog, 2d ed., Bd. III. (1870), pp. 543 sqq. Dr. W. KRAFFT: Die 
deutxche JJibcl ror LutJier, sein Verhdltniss zu derselben und seine Vcr- 
di -nxte ntn die deutxche Bibeliibersetzung. Bonn. 1883 (25 pages. 4. ) 
Also the recent discussions (1885-1887) of KELLER, HAUPT, JOSTES, 
RACHEL, KAWERAU, KOLDE, K. MULLER, on the alleged Waldeusian 
origin of the pre-Lutheran German version. 

1 Both letters in Walch, XIX. GOG sqq. ; Luther s letter in De Wette, II. 
112-115. Comp. Ktistlin, I. 485 sq. The usual opinion that Albrecht revived 
the traffic in indulgences at Ilalle seems at least doubtful, and is denied by 
Albrecht Welters in his Easter Program, Ifat C<(rdin<il AUn-ecJit ron Mainz 
im J. 1521 den TctzfV schcn Ablasxhandel crncuert 1 Bonn, 1877 (pp. 24). 
He concludes: " Somit iL-fir der Abyott, welchen Luther bekampfte, nicht 
die Ernencruny dcs Trtzel schcn Ablasshandels, sondeni die Wiederaufrirht- 
uny der in Rrtrhtten theils erloschenen, the Us erloschenden alien Ablasxlchre, 
welchc dfr Cardinal durch Ausstelluny seiner mit Abluss begnadigten Reli- 
qnif-n znr Hi ltuuy des neuen Stifts und in der Stiftskirche zu Ilalle im Jahr 
1,521 vf-rxuclit Ii(tt." 


Tlie richest fruit of Luther s leisure on the AVartburg, and 
the most important and useful work of his whole life, is the 
translation of the New Testament, by whieh he brought the 
teaching and example of C hrist and the Apostles to the mind 
and heart of the Germans in life-like reproduction. It was 
a republication of the gospel. He made the Bible the peo 
ple s book in church, school, and house. If he had done 
nothing else, lie would Ix. one of the greatest benefactors of 
the German-speaking race. 1 

His version was followed by Protestant versions in other 
languages, especially the French, Dutch, and Knglish. The 
Bible ceased to be a foreign hook in a foreign tongue, and 
became naturalized, and hence far more clear and dear to the 
common people. Hereafter the Reformation depended no 
longer on the works of the Reformers, but on the book of 
God, which everybody could read for himself as his daily 
guide in spiritual life. This inestimable blessing of an open 
Bible for all, without the permission or intervention of pope 
and priest, marks an immense advance in church history, 
and can never be lost. 

1 The testimony of the. great philosopher Ilegol is worth quoting. lie 
says in his 7V,/ /*<,,,/,;, ,/,,- ( f //!>/</, p. :><>;;: " Luthtr hut <//> Autoritat <l< r 
Kiri hv rcnmrfen mid an Hire Sti-lh- dii lii nl nn>l das Znti/nittn di-s ii-nsi-fi- 
li -hcn Ci-!st> s yi-xi-tzt. 7></.s.x xmi di". lli l .s-//,.s d!>- Crniidl W <l < hri*t- 
I flnn Kiri-lit: /> ucorih n i*t, !*t run der yroxxten \\~ic kliykcit ; j< <lcr M<// xit-h 
nun mlhut durimx b lc liri n. )< <1<T win (*cirisscn ilni dux lieatijninen knnncn. 
Diess ist die unyehcurc \ <-r(in>l> run / im / /////<: <lie <i<nizc Tradition un-l 
da* Gebtiudv <// Kirche wird prohlematixrh mid dnn / //</*//< d<r Antoritat 
ll<r Kirche. >/;/;/< stnxxtn. ]) I <-f>ir* t~ mi /, n ( li-l/t- Lutfu-r ron d<r /> / / 
ycinarJit hat, is ron iinxrhtitihari in \\ i rth< Jiir <lnx <! ntsrln I o/A ;/<//< .SMI. 
Z)j>.sr.s li it dadm-rh cin ViMxtnirh trhaltt-n, //> kiinr \<i/,n,, ,hr kathn- 
liHcfieti \\ rlt fin nnlrhfH hat ; nit; hao> n n-olil <in I nzald ron (*cln-thtirhlfin, 
uhcr kcin Grnndom-h znr ]!> lclirnn<j d> .x I olkx. Trofz di in h<it man in IK n- 
erenZcitm Sin-it di->tnhalh /// > ;/, nh r* zircckindMxi / X i,d<in Volk< di<; 
Ilifn l in <lic Hand ZH ijtht n , di>- w<-ni<i< n Xarldh il> , // </i< .sr.s hut, v r<l< n 
dorft ?>! in Hi in von den inii/ehvun n \ ort In Hen iVn-rii inj n ; die auxserlichen 
Gexrfii -hti /i, di- ! in Il mid I Y/-.sM,/./r (//t.v/;/ s<in konn>n, irnxx 
der rvliyii me Sinn n?hr icuhl ZH mifi rsr/,,;,l,)i, nnd si<-h an /".s Sidmtantii lie 
halt/ nd n> ,-"-hidit /.</<." (I.>i1ln-r, p. 4 _ | <-:tlN I.iith-r s tr:in-l;iti<>n 
of tlu- IJiUi- " tin- greatest of ;ill the gifts lie \v;us ahle t<j offer to Gerniany. 


Earlier Versions. 

Luther was not the first, but by far the greatest translator 
of the German Bible, and is as inseparably connected with 
it as Jerome is with the Latin Vulgate. He threw the older 
translation into the shade and out of use, and has not been 
surpassed or even equaled by a successor. There are more 
accurate versions for scholars (as those of De Wette and 
Weizsacker), but none that can rival Luther s for popular 
authority and use. 

The civilization of the barbarians in the dark ages began 
with the introduction of Christianity, and the translation of 
such portions of the Scriptures as were needed in public 

The Gothic Bishop Wulffla or Wolflein (i.e., Little Wolf) 
in the fourth century translated nearly the whole Bible from 
the Greek into the Gothic dialect. It is the earliest monu 
ment of Teutonic literature, and the basis of comparative 
Teutonic philology. 1 

During the fourteenth century some unknown scholars 
prepared a new translation of the whole Bible into the 
Middle High German dialect. It slavishly follows the Latin 
Vulgate. It may be compared to Wiclifs English Version 
(1380), which was likewise made from the Vulgate, the origi 
nal languages being then almost unknown in Europe. A 
copy of the New Testament of this version has been recently 
published, from a manuscript in the Premonstratensian con 
vent of Tepl in Bohemia. 2 Another copy is preserved in the 

1 Hence repeatedly published from the remaining fragmentary MSS. in 
Upsala (Codex Argenteus, so called from its silver binding), Wolfenbiittel 
and Milan, by II. C. von Gabelenz and J. Loebe (1836), Massmann (1S57), 
Bernhardt (1875), JStamm (1878), Uppstrom (1854-1868, the most accurate 
edition), R. Miiller and II. Hoeppe (1881), W. W. Skeat (1882). Comp. also 
Jos. Bosworth, The Gothic and Anylo-Sturon Gospel* in ]*raUel Columns 
with the Versions of Wycliffc and Tyndule, London, 2d ed., 1874 (with a 
fac-simile of the Codex Argenteus). 

2 By P. Philipp Klimesch (librarian of the convent), Dcr CWex Tvplen- 


college library at Freiberg in Saxony. 1 Both are from the 
fourteenth century, and agree almost word for word with 
thu first printed German Bible, but contain, besides the New 
Testament, the apocryphal letter of St. Paul to the Laodi- 
ceans, which is a worthless compilation of a few sentences 
from the genuine writings of the apo>tle.- 

Aftcr the invention of the printing-press, and before the 
Reformation, this mediaeval German Bible was more fre 
quently printed than any other except the Latin Vulgate/ 3 
No less than seventeen or eighteen editions appeared between 
14(!- and l~> 2 2, at Strassburg, Augsburg, Niirnberg, Coin, 
Liibeck, and Halberstadt (fourteen in the High, three or four 
in the Low German dialect). Most of them are in large 
folio, in two volumes, and illustrated by wood-cuts. The edi 
tions present one and the same version (or rather two ver 
sions, one High German, the other Low German) with 
dialectical alterations and accommodations to the textual 

six, enthnltf n<l * D u: Srfirift /<* ncivi-n Gi Zi f .iex." A<lt< *t< <l<-ntx< hc If<til- 
frhrifti I -ifrfn <lr,i int 15 Jnhrlt. <J< <lni<-kti n ilrutsrhi li nihi hi ZU (wi-Hlidfiiclc- 

<l it. Aimslniri; and Miinchen, 1SS1-11, in .\ parts. The Codex contains 
aho homilies of St. Aujjustin and St. Chrysostoin, and seven articles of faith. 
Tin- last especially have induced Keller and Haupt to assign the translation 
to Waldensian origin, lint these Addenda are not nncatholie, ami at most 
would only prove Waldensian or Bohemian proprietorship of this particular 
copy, hut not authorship of the translation. See \<>n-> helo\v. p. : ,:>: ,. 

1 See Dr. M. Rachel s (Jyinnasial ppt^rain: 1 c n-r <lir Frii!>,r<f<r Iliful- 
hamlschr tft, nc mt llfitriiijcn zur G /// cor tut he rise hen Bibclubersetzuny, 
Fr-ilieri:, IN>< (:;i pau es). 

- This apocryphal Kpistlo was also included in the Alhii^ensian (liomance) 
version of the loth century, in a Bohemian version, and in the early English 
Uihlfs, in two independent translations of the 1 Jih or l"th century, hut not 
in Widifs lijhl,.. See Forshall and Maddan, U l/clijliti- \ <-i-shwx f tin 
lli>>l> (ls:,(), IV. 4:JSsi|.: An-er, l >t>irtli-n L<i<i;c< ncrl>ricf ( Lrip/.ii:. l.^-J:!): 
and Litihtfoot. < <///*. nn EI>. t<> tin ( I,IOXH!IIHN (London, 1ST")), p. . {(^; *<\. On 
th- other hand, the same pseudo-Pauline Epistle appears in many MSS. and 
early editions of the Vulgate, and in the (Jerman versions of Eck and Dieten- 
berjjer. It can therefore not he used as an argument for or against, the 
Waldensiaii hypothesis of Keller. 

A Ninety-seven editions of the Vulgate were pritited between 14~>0 and 
loiN), -js in Italy (nearly all in Veniet-), ! in (Germany, 10 in Basel, ( J in 
France. See- FriUsehr in ller/.o^", vol. \ 1I1. loU. 


variations of the MSS. of the Vulgate, which was in a very 
unsettled condition before the Clementine recension (1592). 
The revisers are as unknown as the translators. 

The spread of this version, imperfect as it was, proves the 
hunger and thirst of the German people for the pure word of 
God, and prepared the way for the Reformation. It alarmed 
the hierarchy. Archbishop Berthold of Mainz, otherwise a 
learned and enlightened prelate, issued, Jan. 4, 148U, a pro 
hibition of all unauthorized printing of sacred and learned 
books, especially the German Bible, within his diocese, giv 
ing as a reason that the German language was incapable of 
correctly rendering the profound sense of Greek and Latin 
works, and that laymen and women could not understand 
the Bible. Even Geiler of Kaisersberg, who sharply criti 
cised the follies of the world and abuses of the Church, 
thought it u an evil thing to print the Bible in German." 

Besides the whole Bible, there were numerous German 
editions of the Gospels and Epistles (Plenaria), and the Psal 
ter, all made from the Vulgate. 1 

Luther could not be ignorant of this mediaeval version. 
He made judicious use of it, as he did also of old German 
and Latin Irpnns. Without such aid he could hardly have 
finished his New Testament in the short space of three 
months. 2 But this fact does not diminish his merit in the 
least ; for his version was made from the original Hebrew and 
Greek, and was so far superior in every respect that the older 
version entirely disappeared. It is to all intents a new work. 

1 In the library of Munich there are 21 MSS. of German versions of 
the Gospels and Epistles. The Gospels for the year were printed about 25 
times before 1518; the Psalter about i:J times before 151:-]. See besides the 
works of Panzer, Kehrein, Keller, Ilaupt, above quoted, Alzo, Die dentsch- 
en Plenarien ini 15. und zit An/any ties 16. Jahrh., Freiburg-i-15., 1S74. 

2 Luther s use of the older German version was formerly ignored or 
denied, but has been proved by Professor Krafft of Bonn (1SS3). He adds, 
however, very justly (I.e. p. 19): " Es yereickt Luther zum yri isxten Ve.r- 
dienxt, daxx cr auf den yricchischen Grundtext zuruckyeyanyen, den dentsch- 
>n \\ <>r1ftr}i(itz ziinfifft^f im N. T. wcucntlich berichtiyt, d<in ((her auch 
ntit seiner Genifilitfit bedeutend ceriitehrt h<U." See Notes below, p. JJ02. 


Luther s Qualifications. 

Luther had a rare combination of gifts for a Iible trans 
lator: familiarity witli the original languages, perfect mastery 
over the vernacular, faith in the revealed word of (iod, enthu 
siasm for tin? gospel, unction of the Holy Spirit. A good 
translation must he both true and free, faithful and idiomatic, 
so as to reai I like an original work. This is the case with 
Luther s version. Resides, he had already acquired such fame 
and authority that his version at once commanded universal 

His knowledge of Greek and Hebrew was onlv moderate, 


but sufficient to enable him to form an independent judg 
ment. 1 What he lacked in scholarship was supplied by his 
intuitive genius and the help of Melanchthon. In the Her 
man tongue he had no rival. He created, as it were, or gave 
shape and form to the modern High German. He combined 
the official language of the government with that of the 
common people. He listened, as he savs, to the speech of 
the. mother at home, the children in the street, the men and 
women in the market, the butcher and various tradesmen in 
their shops, and Hooked them on the month," in pursuit of 
the most intelligible terms. His genius for poetry and music 
enabled him to reproduce the rhythm and melody, the par 
allelism and symmetry, of Hebrew poetry and prose. His 
Crowning qualification was his intuitive insight and spiritual 
sympathy with the contents of the IJible. 

A good translation, he says, requires "a truly devout, faith 
ful, diligent, Christian, learned, experienced, and practiced 
heart/ 1 

1 " 7 7( Avoi/i," h says in his Tix h> f- l -n, " wwlcr f/rierhlxch nnch < f>r(C- 
bch, ich will aher dennoch eiii -m E ! >m<i- mul Hri<->-lu n z uml u h l>c<jt jnen. 
Ahcr <lii Sjtrnrhen innrhi n fiir .<*/<// .x-/ ;x/ kiiiu n Tin <>l<,</cii, sn<lern nin<l nnr 
fine 1 1 i !/. Dt-iin will t-lin-r r-,n >i,-,n I)in<i> rl> n. * >/" >.< >r <//V Snrhc 
[Spruche f] zucur wimtcn und ct t-xtelvn." Erl.-l- rkl. -il., \ol. LXII. :Ji;J. 


Progress of his Version. 

Luther was gradually prepared for this work. He found 
for the first time a complete copy of the Latin Bible in the 
University Library at Erfurt, to his great delight, and made 
it his chief study. lie derived from it his theology and 
spiritual nourishment ; he lectured and preached on it as 
professor at Wittenberg day after day. lie acquired the 
knowledge of the original languages for the purpose of its 
better understanding. He liked to call himself a " Doctor 
of the Sacred Scriptures." 

He made his first attempt as translator with the seven 
Penitential Psalms, which he published in March, 1517, six 
months before the outbreak of the Reformation. Then fol 
lowed several other sections of the Old and New Testaments, 
the Ten Commandments, the Lord s Prayer, the Prayer of 
King Manasseh, the Magnificat of the A irgin Mary, etc., 
with popular comments. He was urged by his friends, espe 
cially by Melanchthon, as well as by his own sense of duty, 
to translate the whole Bible. 

He began with the New Testament in November or Decem 
ber, 1521, and completed it in the following March, before he 
left the Wartburg. He thoroughly revised it on his return 
to Wittenberg, with the effectual help of Melanchthon, who 
was a much better Greek scholar. Sturz at Erfurt was con 
sulted about coins and measures ; Spalatin furnished from 
the Electoral treasury names for the precious stones of the 
New Jerusalem (Rev. ch. 21). The translation was then 
hurried through three presses, and appeared already Sept. 
21, 1522, but without his name. 1 

1 Under the title: Das Newe Testament Deutzsch. Wittemberg. With 
wood-cuts by Lucas Cranach. one at the beginning of each book and twenty- 
one in the Apocalypse. The chapter division of the Latin Bible, dating 
from Hugo a St. Caro, was retained with some paragraph divisions; the ver- 
sicular division was as yet unknown (Robert Stephanus first introduced it in 
his Latin edition, 15 IS, and in his Greek Testament of 1551). The order of 


In December a second edition was required, which con 
tained many corrections and improvements. 1 

He at once proceeded to the more difficult task of trans 
lating the Old Testament, and published it in purls as they 
were ready. Tke Pentateuch appeared in 152o; the Psalter, 

In the progress of the work he founded a CIh- t /nnn Bllli- 
cii/ii, or Bible club, consisting of his colleagues Melunchthon, 
Bugenhagen (Pommer), Cruciger, Justus .Jonas, and Auro- 
gallus. They met once a week in his house, several hours 
before supper. Deacon Georg Rorer (Rorarius), the first 
clergyman ordained by Luther, and his proof-reader, was also 
present; occasionally foreign scholars were admitted; and 
Jewish rabbis were freely consulted. Each member of the 
company contributed to the work from his special knowledge 
and preparation. Melanchthon brought with him the Greek 
Bible, Cruciger the Hebrew and Chaldee, Bugenhagen the 
Vulgate, others the old commentators; Luther had always 
with him the Latin and the German versions besides the 
Hebrew. Sometimes they scarcely mastered three lines of 
the Book of Job in four days, and hunted two. three, and 
four weeks for a single word. No record exists of the discus 
sions of this remarkable company, but Mathesius savs that 
"wonderfully beautiful and instructive speeches were made/ 

At last the whole Bible, including the Apocrypha as 
"books not equal to the Holy Scriptures, yet useful and 

the Epistles is changed, and the change remained in all subsequent editions. 
Sonic parallel passages and glosses an- added on the margin. It contained 
many typographical errors, a very curious one in (Jal. ">: .: " l>n L!<t>< \ >li: 
durrfi <lrn (iluubcn thati j //," instead of " JJer G /u6r, <l< r (lurch dii Licbc 
thitti f int." 

A copy of this rare edition, without the full-page Apocalyptic pictures, hut 
with the error jitst noticed, is in the t nion Seminary Library, New York. 
It has the famous preface wit li the tlinu at the "r7,f,- xtrmrn h t istcl" 
of St. James, which was afterwards omitted or modified. 

1 The woodcuts were also chan^-d. The triple papal crown of the IJahy- 
lonian \\ in Ilev. ch. IT i, avc place to a simple cm\\n. 


good to read," was completed in 1534, and printed with 
numerous woodcuts. 

In the mean time the New Testament had appeared in six 
teen or seventeen editions, and in over fifty reprints. 1 

Luther complained of the many errors in these irresponsi 
ble editions. 

He never ceased to amend his translation. Besides cor 
recting errors, lie improved the uncouth and confused orthog 
raphy, fixed the inflections, purged the vocabulary of obscure 
and ignoble words, and made the whole more symmetrical 
and melodious. 

lie prepared five original editions, or recensions, of his 
whole Bible, the last in 1545, a year before his death. 2 This 
is the proper basis of all critical editions. 3 

The edition of 1540 was prepared by his friend liorer, and 
contains a large number of alterations, which lie traced to 
Luther himself. Some of them are real improvements, e.g., 
tb Die Liebe ho ret trimmer auf" for - Die Liebe wird nicht 
m tide (1 Cor. 13:8). The charge that he made the changes 
in the interest of Philippism (Alelanchthonianism), seems to 
be unfounded. 

1 Fritzseho (l.r., p. 540): " Tom N. T. sind von 1522-1533 zicmlidi flicker 
16 original Ausyaben nad*iycwiescn. . . . Die Nachdrucke belaufen sich auf 
unyefahr 54, wobci An<jsbur>j nut 14, Strassbury mit 13, and Basel niit 12 
vcrtrclvn ist." 

2 Under the title: Bibli, das ist die yautzc Hdliyc .SV//r//Y, De.utsch. 
Ai/fl s e zuycridd. 1). Mart. Luther. \\~ittentbcry. Durdi Hans Lufft, 
N.D.XLV. fol. with iiiuuerous woodcuts. A coiiy in the Canstein Bibel- 
anstdlt at Halle. The Union Thool. Seminary in Xew York has a copy of 
the edition of 1 .">:)."> which bears tliis title: Hibli<( das 1st die \ yantze Hei- 
li</(> | Schrifft Dcntsch. \ Mart. Lttth. \ ^ Utcntbt-ry. \ Bc inadct mit A Hr- \ 
fiirstlii ficr zn Sadixen \freifidt. \ Gedrudct durdi Hans Lujj f. \ M.D.- 
A A A ] r . The margin is ornamented. Then follows the hnjtriniatur of the 
Elector John Frederick of Saxony, a preface of Luther to the O. T., and a 
rude picture of God, the globe and paradise with Adam and Eve among 
trees and animals. 

3 Republished with the greatest care by Biudseil & Xiemeyer. See Lit., 
p. :34U. 


Editions and Revisions* 

The printed Bible text of Luther had the same fate as 
the written text of the old Itala and Jerome s Vulgate. It 
passed through innumerable improvements and mis-improve 
ments. The orthography and inllections were modernized, 
obsolete words removed, the versicular division introduced 
(first in a Heidelberg reprint, 15 )8), the spurious clause of 
the three witnesses inserted in 1 John f> : 7 (first by a Frank 
furt publisher, 1574), the third and fourth books of Ezra and 
the third hook of the Maccabees added to the Apocrypha, 
and various oilier changes effected, necessarv and unnecessary, 
good and bad. Elector August of Saxony tried to control 
the text in the interest of strict Lutheran orthodoxy, and 
ordered the preparation of a standard edition (1581). But 
it was disregarded outside of Saxony. 

Gradually no less than eleven or twelve recensions came 
into use, some based on the edition of 154"), others on that of 
1540. The most careful recension was that of the Oanstein 
Bible Institute, founded by a pious nobleman, Carl Hilde- 
brand von C anstein (1007-1 71! ) in connection with Francke s 
Orphan House at Halle. It acquired the largest circulation 
and became the tvrtu* reccptus of the German Bible. 

With the immense progress of biblical learning in the pres 
ent century, the desire for a timely revision of Luther s ver 
sion was more and more felt. Revised versions with many 
improvements were prepared by Joh. Friedrieh von Meyer, a 
Frankfurt patrician (1772-1849), and Dr. Rudolf Slier (1^00- 
1802), but did not obtain public authority. 

At last a conservative official revision of the Luther Bible 
was inaugurated by the combined German church govern 
ments in 180-1. with a view and fair prospect of superseding 
all former editions in public use. 1 

1 .Sec Note at the end of the next section. 


The Success. 

The German Bible of Luther was saluted with the great 
est enthusiasm, and became the most powerful help to the 
Reformation. Duke George of Saxony, Duke William of 
Bavaria, and Archduke Ferdinand of Austria strictly pro 
hibited the sale in their dominions, but could not stay the 
current. Hans Lufft at Wittenberg printed and sold in forty 
years (between 1534 and 1574) about a hundred thousand 
copies, an enormous number for that age, and these were 
read by millions. The number of copies from reprints is 
beyond estimate. 

Cochlaeus, the champion of Romanism, paid the translation 
the greatest compliment when he complained that u Luther s 
New Testament was so much multiplied and spread by print 
ers that even tailors and shoemakers, yea, even women and 
ignorant persons who had accepted this new Lutheran gos 
pel, and could read a little German, studied it with the 
greatest avidity as the fountain of all truth. Some com 
mitted it to memory, and carried it about in their bosom. 
In a few r months such people deemed themselves so learned 
that they were not ashamed to dispute about faith and the 
gospel not only with Catholic laymen, but even with priests 
and monks and doctors of divinity/ 1 

The Romanists were forced in self-defense to issue rival 
translations. Such were made by Emser (1527), Dieten- 
berger (1534), and Eck (1537), and accompanied with an 
notations. They are more correct in a number of passages, 
but slavishly conformed to the Vulgate, stiff and heavy, and 
they frequently copy the very language of Luther, so that 
he could say with truth, u The Papists steal my German of 
which they knew little before, and they do not thank me for 

1 De Artix < t Scriptix M. Luther i ad ami. 1522. Gieseler (IV. 65 sq.) 
quotes the whole passage iii Latin. 

02. Ll TII Mil s TRANSLATION <>F THE IHHLK. o.")l 

it, but rather use it against me." These versions have long 
since gone out of use even in the Roman Church, while 
Luther s still lives. 1 



According to tin- latest investigations, fourteen printed editions of tin- 
whole BH le in the Middle Hiizh Herman dialect, and three in the Low 
German, have heen identified. Pan/er already knew fourteen; see his (it-nek, 
der niirnbtryixclu n Anw/iiix-n <l> r /> / /, Niirnberg, 17~s, p. 74. 

The first four, in large folio, appeared without date and place of publica 
tion, hut were prohahly printed: 1, at Strasshurg, by Ueinrieh Eggestein, 
about or before lluii (the falsely so-called M.ilnzn l>i>>cl of 1 M J): 2, at Strass- 
burg, by .Johann Mentelin, 14<it) ( ); :;, ;it Augsburg, by Jodocus Pflanzrnann, 
or Tyner, 1470 (?); 4, at Niirnberg, by Sensensehmidt and Frissner, in 2 vols., 
40Sand K) Heaves, 1470-7:) ( ?). The others are loe.ited, and from the seventh 
on also dated, viz.: 5, Augsburg, by Hiinther Zainer, 2 vols., probably be 
tween 147: >-1 47"). 0, Augsburg, by the same, dated 1477 (Stevens says, 147") . ). 
7, The third Augsburg edition, by Giinther Xainer, or Anton Sorg. 1477, 2 
vols., :;-Jl and l}:\-2 leaves, fol., printed in double eoluinns; the first Herman 
Bible with a date. 8, The fourth Augsburg edition, by A. Sorg, 14SO, folio. 
9,Niin\berir. by Anton K>burger(alsospelled Koberger), 14s:j. lo, Strassburg, 
by Johann (Jrnninger, 14>.">. 11 and 12. The fifth and sixth Ansisburg edi 
tions, in small fol., by Hans Sehonsperger, 14S7 and 14SK). i:j, The seventh 
Augsburg edition, by Hans Olmar, l. jiiT, small folio. 14, The eighth Augs 
burg edition, by .Silvan Olinar, 1.">1S, small folio. 

The Low Duteh Hibles were printed: 1, at Cologne, in large folio, double 
columns, probably 14 s o. The unknown editor speaks of previous editions 
and his own improvements. Stevens (Nos. (.">;) and (i">4) mentions two copies 
Of theO. T. in Dutch, printed at Delf. 1477, 2 vols. fol. 2, At Liibcck, ll .H 
(not ll . l). -2 vols. fi.l. with large woodcuts. :!, At Halbcr>tadt, l."L _ . 

Comp. Kehrein (/. .), KratVt (/. ., pj. 4, ">), .-iml Henry Stevens, Tin: 
Sifilt M in the Ciifton Ksftlfiltion. London, ls7S. Stevens gives the full titles 
With descriptions, pp. 4.~> s<|<|., net-. < _ n KJI|. 

Several of these Hibles, including the Koburger and thoe of Cologne and 
Halberstadt, are in the possession of the I nion Theol. Seminary, New York. 
I ex.- inined them. They are ornamenteil by woodcuts, beginning with a 
picture of God creating the world, and forming Kve from the rib of Adam 
in Paradise. Several of them have Jerome s preface (!)> oiitnihtix <litin<K 
kUtorice Uf>rin, /;/>. ii l I miUnn,!,), the oldest with the remark: " l)<i hchct 
an <lit cjiiHti I id * fit ili /i 11 {iritxti rn *<tnt Jeraniini zu Paulinuin ton alien yott- 
lic/i n Intchfrn tier hyxtury. hx >rxt c<t]iitt l." 

1 The last edition of Dr. Eck s Bible appeared in 1506. at Iiigolstadt, 


Dr. Krafft illustrates the dependence of Luther on the earlier version by 
several examples (pp. 13-18). The following is from the Sermon on the 
Mount, Matt. 5:21-27:- 


Habt ir yehiirt, das yesayet ist den 
alien, du salt nit todten, wcllicher 
aber todtct. dcr icird schuldiy des ye- 
ricJtts. Aber ich say euch, daz tin ye- 
ylicher der do ziirnet seinem bruder. 
dcr wirt schuldiy des ycrichts. Dcr 
aber spricht zu seinem bruder. racha. 
der wirt schuldiy den rats. Und dcr 
do spricht. tor. dcr wirt schuldiy des 
hellischen fewrs. Dorian oh du opf- 
ferst dfiin (tab zu dem altar, und do 
wirst yedenckend. daz dein bruder 
ettwas ha.t wider dich, laxz do dein 
yab vor dem altar vnd yce zum erstcn 
und versiine dich in it deim bruder und 
denn kum und opffcr dein yab. His 
gehelliy dcim widerwertiyen schyer. 
die weyl du rnit i>n bist him wcy. daft 
dich villeycht dcr widersacher nit ant- 
wurt dem richter. und der richtcr dich 
antwurt dem diener und werdest ye- 
leyt in den kercker. Fiirwar ic/i say 
dir. du yet-fit nit aus von dannen. und 
da* du vcryelteat den letzten qua- 


Ihr habt yehortt, das zu den alten 
yesayt ist, du sollt nit todten, wcr 
aber todtet, der soil dcs ycrichts schul 
diy seyn. Ich aber saye euch, wer 
mit seyncm bruder zuniit, dcr ist des 
yerichts schuldiy, wer aber zu seynem 
bruder s<tyt, Racha, der ist des rads 
schuldiy, wer aber sayt, du narr, der 
ist des hellischen fev crs schuldiy. 

Daruinb wen du deyn yabe auff 
de.n altar opfferst, un ivirxt alda eyn- 
yedcnken, das deyn bruder ettwas 
ividder dich hab, so la.s alda fur dem 
altar dei/n yabe, unnd yehe zuvor hyn, 
unnd i-ersime dich mitt dcynem bru 
der, unnd als denn kom unnd opffer 
dajn yabe. 

Key willfertiy deynrm widersa 
cher, bald, diewcul du noch mit yhm 
ciu(f dan wcye bist, duff das dich der 
widdersacher nit dcr mal cyns ubir- 
antwortte dem richter, un d. richter 
ubirantworte dich dem diener, un wer- 
dist yli den kcrckcr yew or [fen, warlich 
ich saye dyr, du u ir.^t nit von dannen 
erciuzx komen, bis du auch den letzten 
/idler bczalcst. 

To this I add two specimens in which the superiority of Luther s version 
is more apparent. 

EX. 1:1-3. 


Im an f any schuff Gott himel und 
erden. Und die erde war wust und 
leer, und es war Jinster auff dcr ticffe, 
und der Gcist Gottes schwebet auff 
dem wasscr. 


Ill dem anfuny hat yot bexchaften 
fiyntel und crden. aber dye erde was 
eytel und leere. und die vinsternus 
n:arn auff dem cnitlitz des abyrunds. 
vnd dcr ycist yots swcbct oder ward 
yctrayfii auff den wassern. Un yot 
der sj>rfich. /> wcrde dz liecht. Un 
das liecht ist worden. 

Und Gott sprach. Es werdc liecht. 
Und es ward liecht. 


1 Con. 13: 1, 2. 


O ii /t inn der znnyen der I Wenn ich mit incnschen nnd mit 
enyel rnd d> r menschen ; dber habe enyclzitnyrn redet nnd lielle die //- 
iclt der lit b nit, icli bin yemacht a//* be., nit,- .so icdn /</< ein ti mend ertz 
tin ylofken*i>eytin la<ite)i<l oder alls oder cin klinyende schell.* Und irmn 
ein xclx ll klinyend. } nd oh irh hub / // irr tHsnyen kiindt, rnnd fiixte alle 
die weisnayuny nnd erkenn all Iteiut- yeheymnims vnd alle erkantniiim, rnd 
liclikett rnd alle knnst, nnd nb ich liab hette alien yldithrn, "/.so o?a.s //< bery 
alien ylditben, <tlx<j dan iclt iiberlrdy rer*< f;<ti , nnd Itett der lithe nicht, .so 
die bery, liahc ich dber der lieb nit, : were. i< h niclitK. 
iclt bin ni<-/,t.i. 

1 Ed. of 1 ."/;.": der. 2 Ed. of lo- Jo: nirltt. 8 Lat-r eds. : cine . . . scliellc. 

Tlie precise origin of the mediieval C.erman Bilile is still unknown. Dr. 
Ludwig Keller of Minister first suggested in his Die Reformation nnd die 
tiltirin Hi f irinjiarti-if ii, Leipzig, iss.", pp. 2 )7--<)0, the hypothesis that it 
was made by \Valdenses (who had also a Romanic version): and he tried 
to prove it in his Die ]\ alden:-r nnd die dentwhen Uibeliibcrnetzunyen, 
Leipzig, 1S80 (1S1) pages). Dr. Hermann Ilauiit. of Wiirzburg. took the same 
ground in his Di> denlschf Bibeliiberuetzitny der niitteldllerlicttfn \\ ald< -nxer 
in di in f ndf.r Tejdensis nnd d<-r erxten yedruckten IHbel nachycwiesen, 
Wiirzlxirir. l^v"> (04 jtages); and again, in self-defense against .lostes, in D< r 
irdldennisrfit frsprnny des Cnde.r. 7V/>/r//.s/ .s nnd der vor-lutherischen dent. wh 
en ftibeldrnrke, Wiirzburir, 1SS(5. On the other hand, Dr. FKAN/. .IOSTKS, 
a Roman Catholic scholar, denied the Waldensian and defended the Catholic 
origin of that translation, in two pamphlets: hie Wdldcnwr nnd die rnr- 
luttu-rixrh - Dibfliibt-rnetznny, Miinster. Iss. i (44 pages), and Di<- Tiller Jlibi-l- 
iiberftetzuuy. Einf zn:eite Kritik, Miinster, lSS(i (4:5 pages). The same 
author promises a complete history of (iertuan Catholic Bible versions. Th 
question has b-en discussed in periodicals and reviews, e.g.. by Kawerau in 
Lutliardt s " I heol. Literaturblatt, Leij>/.ig, iss.*> and 1S*; (Nos. :5^-34), by 
ijchaff in thf New York " Independent" for Oct. S, lss.">, and in the " Pres 
byterian R-\ iew " for April, 18- S 7, pj>. .> ) s<|<j.; by Kolde, in the "Gottinger 
Gel.-hrte Aii/.ri _ en," 1^7, No. I.; l>y Miill-r in the "Stndien nnd Kritiken," 
lss7, No. ili. ; and Bornemann, in the " .lain !>. f. Prot. Theol.," issy, (J7-1O1. 

The anruments for the Waldensian origin are derived from certain addi 
tions to the Codex Teplensis, and alleged departures from the text of the 
Vulgate. But the additions are not anti-Catholic, and are not found in 
the cognate Freiberger MS.; and the textual variations can not be traced to 
sectarian bias. The text of tin- Vulgate was in greater confusion in the 
middle ages than the text of the Ital.i at the time of Jerome, nor was there 
any authorized text of it before the Clementine recension of 1.VJ2. The only 


plausible argument which Dr. Keller brings out in his second publication 
(pp. 80 sqq.) is the fact that Emser, in his A)niotti<tf< to the Xen- Text. 
(102:J), charges Luther with having translated the X. T. from a " H >/,-/r//w7i 
o<hr husxiffch exe>ni>ldr." But this refers to copies of the Latin Vulgate; 
and in the examples quoted by Keller, Luther does not agree with the Codex 

The hostility of several Popes and Councils to the circulation of vernacular 
translations of the Bible implies the existence of such translations, and 
could not prevent their publication, as the numerous (ierman editions prove. 
Dutch, French, and Italian versions also appeared among the earliest prints. 
See Stevens, Xos. (1ST and OS* (p. 50 sq.). The Italian edition exhibited in 
1ST7 at London is entitled: La liiblid <-n lin<jii Vol /arc (per Xlmlo <1i N<d- 
lermi). Venetia: per Joan. Rosso Vercellese, 14S", fol. A Spanish Bible 
by Bonif. Ferrer was printed at Valencia, 1478 (see Reuss, Gesch. dcr lull. 
Schr. N. T.. II. 207, ">th ed.). 

The Bible is the common property and most sacred treasure of all Chris 
tian churches. The art of printing was invented in Catholic times, and its 
history goes hand in hand with the history of the Bible. Henry Stevens 
says ( The Itiblex hi the C n.rtou Exhibition, p. *2~>): "The secular history of 
the Holy Scriptures is the sacred history of Print ing. The Bible was the 
first book printed, and the Bible is the last book printed. Between 1450 and 
1S77, an interval of four centuries and a quarter, the Bible shows the prog 
ress and comparative development of the art of printing in a manner that no 
other single book can; and Biblical bibliography proves that during the first 
forty years, at least, the Bible exceeded in amount of printing all other 
books put together; nor were its quality, style, and variety a whit behind its 

68, A Critical Estimate of Lutlicrs J r er$ion. 

Luther s version of the Bible is a wonderful monument of 
genius, learning, and piety, and may be regarded in a second 
ary sense as inspired. It was, from beginning to end, a labor 
of love and enthusiasm. While publishers and printers made 
fortunes, Luther never received or asked a copper for this 
greatest work of his life. 1 

We must judge it from the times. A German translation 
from the original languages was a work of colossal magnitude 
if we consider the absence of good grammars, dictionaries, 

1 ITe could say with perfect truth: " L-h habe mcine Ehre nicht ijnneint, 
auch keinen Heller <1<(t Hr f/cnonnnen. x<tdern Jtube e.s zu Ehren ycthan den 
lichen Christen und zu Ehrvn cinent, dcr drvbvn sitzt." 


and concordances, the crude state of Greek and Hebrew 
scholarship, and of the German language, in the sixteenth 
centurv. Luther wrote to Anisdorf, .Ian. 1 >, l.">-:2, that lie 
had undertaken a task beyond his power, that he now under 
stood why no one had attempted it Itei ore in his own 
name, and that he would not venture on the Old Testament 
without the aid of his friends. 1 lie felt especially how dif 
ficult it was to make Job and the Hebrew prophets speak in 
barbarous (u-nnan.- He jocosely remarked thai .lob would 
have become more impatient at the blunders of his transla 
tors than at the long speeches of his " miserable comforters." 

A> regards the text, it was in an unsettled condition. The 
science of textual criticism wis not yet born, and the mate 
rials for it were not yet collected from the manuscripts, an 
cient versions, and patriotic quotations. Luther had to use 
the first printed editions. He had no access to manuscripts, 
the most important of which were not even discovered or 
made available before the middle of the nineteenth ccniurv. 
Biblical geography ami archeology were in their infancy, and 
manv names and phrases could not be understood at the time. 

In view of thoe difficulties we need not be surprised at 
the large number of mistakes, inaccuracies, and inconsist 
encies in Luther s version. Thev are most numerous in Job 
and the Prophets, who present, even to the advanced Hebrew 
scholars of our day, many involved problems of text and ren 
dering. The Knglish VcrMon of 1JH had the great advan- 

1 "/,/ < rim IJltili l li itnxf -runi, <i>l lil /it ini OJII/N snsrr]>i )-Iil> Knjifil r/ )V\. 
Vi<l iniiir. <ii,l .s-;/ //,/, rfii- fur!, < > "/ // </ /! .s <i i, <>!!,, .s// iith-iitiifinii, unt 
prnjli i-fi 1i noun n xni/in. [This ini|>li<-s his kno\vlcili;i ol oldrr (rcniiiiu 
translations which ;ir; anoiiyinoiis.] l /".s l < *titnn ntnnt im,! jm(tr<> utiiit- 
yer< , n!ni r< //.s ///; ,/.s ./ <<,<,,> ///;,/;/,//>." 

- "Ar/i (;,,((, ,r n- In. J/J-M.S.S //,./ r< ,-.///. .s.s/;--A M*. rk ist rx, <li,- lnhr<ii*<-h n 
Schrdhrr zu ;/ / ;/ n <l> N/.SC// ;<< /.-./ ; icii .\li-nnln-u */ x( 7< mi<l wllfii //// 
hcbritim-he Art <j<tr ni<-ht. n /-/, j.s.v. lt ini l <li in ./ " "" !) ut*< hi-n ntn-!i/"l;irn, 
gl-icli nls ,rrnn in> .V.//-///>// . . . *!!tf //, II, .liclf M< / /// r> ,-l-i*i n 
int l <lm K-k ik iinrh*;,,,/ ." \V:i!.-h. XVI. . .OS. ( ,,,;,. l,i, |,.|t,- r to 
Spalatin :ili.,Mt th.- .li!liriiltu->. in Jub, F.-l;. L ., l- c l, in Do \V.-lt.-, 11. -I "5. 


tage of the labors of three generations of translators and 
revisers, and is therefore more accurate, and yet equally 

TJte Original Text. 

The basis for Luther s version of the Old Testament was 
the Massoretic text as published by Gcrson Ben Mosheh at 
Brescia in 1494. l He used also the Septuagint, the Vulgate 
of Jerome 2 (although he disliked him exceedingly on account 
of his monkery), the Latin translations of the Dominican 
Sanctes Pagnini of Lucca (1527), and of the Franciscan 
Sebastian Minister (1534), the " G-lossa ordhiaria " (a favorite 
exegetical vade-mecum of Walafried Strabo from the ninth 
century), and Xicolaus Lyra (d. 1340), the chief of medieval 
commentators, who, besides the Fathers, consulted also the 
Jewish rabbis. 3 

The basis for the New Testament was the second edition 
of Erasmus, published at Basel in S\vitzerland in 151 0. 4 His 

1 Luther s copy of the Hebrew Bible is preserved in the Royal Library at 
Berlin. The edifio princepx of the whole Hebrew Bible appeared 1483 
(Soncino: Abraham ben Chayin tie Tintori). A copy in possession of Dr. 
Ginsburg iu England. See Stevens, I.e. p. GO. Portions had been printed 

- A copy of the Lyons ed. of 1510, and one of the Basel ed. of 1500, now 
In possession of the Brandenburg Provincial Museum at Berlin. Grimm, 
Gene//. ./. In t her. Bibeliibers., p. 8, note. 

3 Lyra acquired by his Post! lice pcrpctna- in V. ct N. Tent, (first published 
in Rome, 1472, in 5 vols. fol., again at Venice, 1540) the title Doctor plunus 
et utilix. His inllueuce on Luther is expressed in the well-known lines: 

" Si Li/ra non lyrcmxct, 
Luther ux non miltftwet." 

4 Greek and Latin, 2 vols. folio. The first part contains Preface, Dedi 
cation t.<> Pope Leo X., and the Ratio xeu Compendium zerw T/oto>/i(.e 

per Ei nxiituni Roterudamnnt (120 pages); the second part, the Greek Text, 
with a Latin version in parallel columns, with brief introductions to the 
several books (505 pages). At the end is a Latin letter of Frobenius, the 
publisher, dated " Xonis Febr. Anno M.D.XIX." A copy in the Union 
Theol. Seminary, Xew York. Some say that Luther made use of Gerbel s 
reprint of Erasmus, 1521. But Dr. Reuss of Strassburg, who has the largest 
collection and best knowledge of Greek Testaments, denies this. Gcsch. der 
h. Schi\ftcii des A\ T., 5th ed., II. 211, note. 


first edition of the Greek Testament had appeared in l">ls 
just one year before the Reformation. He derived the text 
from a few mediaeval MSS. 1 The second edition, though 
inueh more correet than the first ( nndto diligentiuA recojni- 
tum, eniemlntuMi* etc.), is disfigured by a large number of 
typographical errors. 2 lie laid the foundation of the T>\rtus 
Rwptu*i which was brought into its mature shape by 1L 
Stephen, in his " royal edition " of 1550 (the basis of the Eng- 
lish Tt ftux ReceptU8},nud by the Klzevirs in their editions of 
lij-4 and l)oo(the basis of the Continental Textus Receptux), 
and which maintained the supremacy till Lachmann inaugur 
ated the adoption of an older textual basis (ls:31 ). 

Luther did not slavishly follow the Greek of Erasmus, and 
in many places conformed to the Latin Vulgate, which is 
based on an older text. lie also omitted, even in his last 
edition, the famous interpolation of the heavenly witnesses 
in 1 John "> : 7, which Erasmus inserted in his third edition 
(li) 2 2) against his better judgment. 3 

The German Rendering. 

The German language was divided into as many dialects 
as tribes and states, and none served as a bond of literary 
union. Saxons and Bavarians, Hanoverians and Swabians, 
could scarcely understand each other. Each author wrote 
in the diah-ct of his district, Xwingli in his Schwyzerdiitseh. 

1 SIM- SehatT. ( <n,,p n inn tn tin- Cwk T -xttniii tit, etc., Xew York, :M ed.. 
ISxS, pp. !>_>!) S(|<(., and fhe facsimile of the Krasmian ed. on p. 5^2 sj. Tyn- 
dalf s Knulisli version \v;is likewise iirnlc from Krasmus. 

2 ( >. von f li lihanlt. in his \>irnni 7V.s7. (ir<i >< ct ffmnnnii i-. Preface, 
p. xvi., says of tin- s,-c(inl <(!. of Krasmus: " />/ 7,<i/il <l> r l>n<rkfflil>r i*t so 
f/ro.<, /</.s.s i in rnUKtnnili ifit I IT?. i -lm Is* /M - X / < Sritrn Jiillcn n-iir<l> ." 
Conip. S.-riv.-n.-r, Intm.l. ( th> Criticimn <>t tl,> -V. 7 1 .. :M !. (iss j). p. W2<\. 

* It first appeared in th- Frankfort edition of Lniln-r s Hil)l< . \ >~\. The 
rovisi d LutluT-P.ihlc of l*s:; stran- -ly r-taiiis tin- passau , out in small type 
and in brackets, with th<- note tlmt if was wanting in Luther s editions. 
Tlie / / / " -/ */ departs only in a t - W pl:i-t-s from the Krasmian text as fol 
lowed by Luther: vi/... A<MH |-j:ii:,: II. -b. lu::;i: l John L : j:i: Kev. ll:ii. 
In this res]K-ct the (German p-vi-ion is t .ir behind the Annlo-Ainoriean revis 
ion of lN?l, which ronx-cis the l\j~tn.i Ht .-cjttuit in about live thousand places. 


u I have so far read no book or letter," says Luther in the 
preface to his version of the Pentateuch (152o), u in which 
the German language is properly handled. Nobody seems 
to cure sufficiently for it ; and every preacher thinks he has a 
right to change it at pleasure, and to invent new terms." 
Scholars preferred to write in Latin, and when they attempted 
to use the mother tongue, as Reuchlin and Melanchthon did 
occasionally, they fell far below in ease and beauty of 

Luther brought harmony out of this confusion, and made 
the modern High German the common book language. He 
chose as the basis the Saxon dialect, which was used at 
the Saxon court and in diplomatic intercourse between the 
emperor and the estates, but was bureaucratic, stiff, heavy, 
involved, dragging, and unwieldy. 1 lie popularized and 
adapted it to theology and religion. He enriched it with 
the vocabulary of the German mystics, chroniclers, and poets. 
lie gave it wings, and made it intelligible to the common 
people of all parts of Germany. 

He adapted the words to the capacity of the Germans, often 
at the expense of accuracy. He cared more for the substance 
than the form. He turned the Hebrew shekel into a tiiller- 
li)iy?\\\Q Greek drachma and Roman denarius into a German 

1 He says in his T/scJ/rcdcn (Erl. ed., vol. Ixii. 813): " I< J> Ju/hc brine 
f/ec /, sondcrliche e cjcnr Spntcfte ini Deutschen [i.e., no special dialect], 
sundrrn brttucJie der t/nncinrn deutscJien Spraclie, (^/.s,s mic.h Oberlander uitd 
Niederlanderversteften iniji/en. Ichredenach dcr scichsiscltcn Conzrlri, uv/- 
rhcr naclifolyen <tllc Fiirxlcn und ]\6ni</(> in Deutschland. Ailc Heidi st.udte t 
Furstenhofe sch rcibrn nac/i dcr stichsixchen und mixcrcs Fiirxtcn Canzelti, 
diirniiib /.sf.s auc.h die yemeinste deutxche Spruche. Knixcr Maximilian und 
Knrfiirxt Friedric.h, Ilerzoij zn >Sac/t.s en, etc., hnben hn roinixcltcn lldc/i die 
drnlxrlu ii Sprdchcu [dialects] (tlxo in cine f/cc. / tiprache yezoyen." For- 
int rly the Latin was the diplomatic language in Germany. Louis the Bava 
rian introduced the German in 1330. The founder of the diplomatic German 
of Saxony was Elector Ernst, the father of Elector Friedrich. See Wilibald 
Grimm, Ccwli. <l<r Inth. IHbeliibrrxrtzuni/ (Jena, 1SS4), ]>. 1 ; 4 s<iq. 

- The same word xilrerliny occurs once in the English version, Isa. 7:23, 
and is retained in the K. V. of lS.s.">. The German 1 rubebibel retains it iD 
this and other passages, as Gen. 20:10; Judg. U:4, etc. 


Groxi lt* n, tin 1 quadrans into a ILU.T, the Hebrew measures 
into ,V.7/rf/i7, JLilti-r, T<tn>\ <\utm /, and the Roman centurion 
into a ILuiptnitutii. He substituted even unJ cut sell (!) for 
barbarian in 1 C or. 11:11. Still greater liberties lie allowed 
himself in the Apocrypha, to make them more easy and 
pleasant reading. 1 He used popular alliterative phrases 
as <fV/-/ uit l Gut, Laid uii<l L< at* , Unlit un<f 77///, ,SV /// 
iui 1 St<tl^ /> //// n u)i<l Distclti, i/t iff i(tl ntii li , // ///// iut<l ytibe. 
He avoided foreign terms whieh rushed in like a Hood with 
the revival of learning, especially in proper names (as Me- 
lanchthon for Schwarzerd, Aurifaber for ( Joldschmid, (Eco- 
lampadius for Ilaiisschein. Canierarius for Kannneriueister). 
He eiirii-hed tin vocabulary with such beautiful words as 
h!< /x-7/v, Hottnt liijh tt. 

Kra>nius Alher, a contemporary of Luther, called him the 
German ( ieero, who not only reformed religion, but also 
the (id-man language. 

Luther s version is an idiomatic reproduction of the liible 
in the very spirit of the Bible. It brings out the whole 
wealth, force, and beauty of the (ierinan language. It is the 
first (ii-rnian classic, as King James s version is the first Kng- 
lish classic. It antici[atcd the golden age of (Jerman lit 
erature as represented by Klopstock, Lessing, Herder, (ioethe, 
Schiller, all of them Protestants, and more or less indebted 
to the Luther-Bible for their style. The best authority in 
Teutonic philology pronounces his language to be the foun 
dation of the new High (Jerman dialect on account of its 
purity and inlluencc, and the I rototant dialect on account of 
its freedom which conquered even Koman Catholic authors. 2 

1 S-r (Ininm, Luther x 1 il irsi t:.nn / >1< ; Ajini-rif/iJif-ii, in the "SludifH 
uml Kritikt-n" f.r 1^>: ,, pp. :;7t ,- IIKI. II.- judges thai Luthrr s vci->i.,n of 
Efcloiastirus (.I.-sus Sir:ich) is l.y \\n means a t aitlil ul translation, hut ;i 
model of a fr. .- and happy reproduction from a combination of the (Jreek 
and Latin t.-M.s. 

" Lntlt-r n >>/ / //," says .lakoh Ciinini, in the 1 n-faee to his (iennan 
Granunar, * 4 //i /.s. 


The Protestant Spirit of Luther s Version. 

Dr. Einser, one of the most learned opponents of the Ref 
ormation, singled out in Luther s New Testament several 
hundred linguistic blunders and heretical falsifications. 1 
Many of them were silently corrected in later editions. lie 
published, by order of Duke George of Saxony, a new trans 
lation (1527) for the purpose of correcting the errors of 
" Luther and other heretics." 2 

waUiyen Einjlusses Jialber fur Kern und Grundlaye der neutiochdeutschen 
Sprachniederxetzuny yehalten werden, n-oron bin <itif <l<-n lieutiyen T<ty nn.r 
sehr unbedeiitcnd, meintenx zuni tichoden der Kraft and den Anndruckx, <tb- 
(jewichen warden int. Man dtirf dan Neuhochdeutsclie in der Tlmt tilx den 
protestantischen Ditdekt bezeichnen, dessen freiheltnUunende Xntur liinyftt 
schon, ihnen unbewunnt, Dichter und Schriftnteller d< n kdthulifsclicn Gl(tu- 
bfttff iibcnriilti /te. Unnere Sprncftc ixt n<ir/i dan uiuciflttittxviiiai Lnnfc dtr 
Dinye in Lautverhaltnissen und For/nen <i<*m>l-< n ; n-ax ahcr i/u-en Gcitit 
und Lcib yeniihrt, vcrjUnyl, wa.s undlifli UliiU n IK-IK r I orsie yt trieben hat, 
verdunkcn u ir kciiicm un j ltr <ds Lul/icrn. 7 Coinp. \Vctxt-l, Die .S /</ - ar//e 
Luthers in Miner Hihcl, Stuttcjart, IS /.l. Ilcinrich Kiickcrt, G< *<!/! elite dcr 
neu-hochdeutschen Schriff.ftpraclie, II. 15-17"). Opit/, l. i bur die Xj>ru<:he 
Lntlurs, Halle, ISO!). Dietx, Wort<>rbnch zu Lntlicrx dnitwlu-n Xrhriftcn, 
Leipzig, 187<> sq<j. Lelnuaiin, Luthcrs Spraclie in wincr Ucbcrxetzuny des 
N. T., Halle, 187:5. 

1 Annotdtiones den JiorJ/yeJ. und cJirintJ. doctor* IHeronynn Emxers uber 
Ltithers neinv Textniinut, l.")-j:]. I have before me an edition of Freiburg-i.-B., 
15:}."j (140 pages). Einser charges I.uthcr with a thousand grammatical and 
fourteen hundred heretical errors. He suspects (p. 14) that he had before 
him " l (-in w>ndci !i< h Wicklcjfixch <>der JInxxixr/i E.rt ii>lar." He does not 
say whether he means a copy of the Latin Vulgate or the older German ver 
sion, lie finds (p. 17) four errors in Luther s ver.-ion of the Lord s Prayer: 
1, that he turned Vnter unxcr into Unser Vafw, against the (Jerman custom 
for a thousand years (but in his Shorter Catechism he retained the old form, 
and the Lutherans adhere to it to this day); 2, that he omitted dcr dti bist J 
. ), that he changed the pani* ftupersubstnntialis (iiberselbstandiy lirot !) into 
jiciuix (jiintidliinn* (It cjl/r/i Hrot); 4, that he added the doxology. \\liich is 
not in the Vulgate. In our days, one of the chief objections against the 
English Revision is the omtxxiun of the doxology. 

- Dun tftintz Xi ir Tenttinieiit : No dnrrh den Florhyelertrn L. Tlleronyimnn 
Entncr ficllyen rerleiitnrlit, unter den Dnrrfil<inr//teii Hochyebnrnen Fiirsten 
und Herrt ii Georyen Hcrtzoyn zn Sue/men, etc., fatsyeydnycn int. Leipzig, 
152S. Tlie first edition appeared before Emser s death, which occurred Xov. 
S. I.VJ7. I find in the Union Seininai V four octaVo coj)ies of his X. T., dated 
Coin, 15iis (.^55 pp.), Leipzig, 152 J (410 pp.), Freiburg-i.-13. 1535 (400 pp.), 


The charge that Luther adapted tlie translation to his 
theological opinions has become traditional in the Roman 
Church, and is repeated again and again by her controversial 
ists and historians. 1 

The same objection has been raised against the Authorized 
English Version. 2 

In both cases, the charge lias some foundation, but no 
more than the counter-charge which may be brought against 
Roman Catholic Versions. 

The most important example of dogmatic influence in 
Luther s version is the famous interpolation of the word 

Coin, l.V)S ( S 70 pp.), and a copy of a fol. ed., Cologne, l-">-9 ( 2-1 pp.), all with 
illustrations and marginal notes against Luther. On the concluding pa^e, it 
is stated that <>< )T errors of Luther s are noted and corrected. The Cologne 
ed. of re".* indicates, on the titlepage, that Luther arhitrarily changed t he- 
text according to .the //ux*//e copy ("io/c M<trtinnx Luther <lcin rffhtcn Test, 
dfin hiiKi-lilfo-hf.-n E.rf ////// / narlt, win* <jcfnll< nx <ih itnd- zu<ji th<tn int<l n-r- 
endirt lui i" ). Most editions contain a Preface of Duke (Jeorge of Saxony, 
in whieli he charges Luther with rehellion against all ecclesiastical and secu 
lar authority, and identities him with the beast of the Apocalypse, eh. ] .} 
(" </.x.s .s< in Mmi l v:ol ycnnnnt tcci drn nun/ <!<r Mnml <ler Kcntie von w< letter 
Johnnnea xrlwlbet in si-in<-r (>^ <nhnrini<j <tm dreizchntcn"). 

1 Dr. Dollinu er, in his l!f^ t.n-ni<il!<i, vol. III. l:5 . S(j(j., !."> sqq., -joes into 
an elaborate proof. In his Lnt/nT, einc Skizzc ( Freiburg-i.-I3., l^-M), p. -! >, 
he calls Luther s version ">/ // Miist> rxtiick in xprachlichcr Ilinxiclit. H!K / 
scincin Lehrbi i/rljrc !/riiiiinx ciniicrirliti t, unit ddlier in richu SfcHm (ib.^irlit- 
liclt unrirht!<i uml Kinncntxtcllfntl." So also Cardinal Hergennither (L 7/r- 
buch <lcr all /. Kiri lu w/exrh., vyl. III. -40. third ed. of l>>>t n: " I)ie </cnZv 
UebcrxHzini J W(tr (IdnZ /"// Lnth<rx Si/sti-in zni/rrichlrf, nnf } ,-,-f>ri / /;/;/// 
scim-r Iti-rlitfertiyunuxlrhrc fn-rt-rluK f, <>t t ilnn-h u iHkiilirHfli< Ent*tL Ui(n<j<n 
un<l EiiiNrlniltitnycn scinrn Lt-hrcn <in</( i>iisst.^ 

2 I5y older and mop- recent Koinanists, as Ward, Erraf/i of f/ir Pro/infant 
Jiitih , Dublin, l^lo. Trench considers the main objections in his book on the 
Authorized \ < rxion ni,<l llcrixiim, ]]). It;.") s<|i|. (in the Harper ed. of 1*7:)). 
The chief passages objected to by Koinanists are Hel. \: ,:-\ (uhere the K. V. 
translates " Marriage /.s honorable, in all" for "Let marriage In- honorable 
among all "); 1 Cor. 1 1 : L 7 (" and " for "or"); Cal. . i:f. ("faith which 
worki-lli l>y love;" which is correct according to the prevailing sense of 
tv(p)r<00<u 1 and corre^-poiuls to the Vulgate, njirrnhn-, aizaiiiNt the Koinan 
view of the passive sense, " irmn^/ht by love," in conformity with the doc 
trine of jiilt-x formula), and the renderini: of t u\t.>/.nv by im<i /i . instead of i<1l. 
The K. V. lias also been charged \\ ith a (, alvinistic bias from its cuimection 
With Ue/;i s (ireek text and Latin notes. 


alone in Horn. 3:28 (all e in durcli den Glauben), by which he 
intended to emphasize his solifidian doctrine of justification, 
on tlie plea that the. Gennaii idiom required the insertion for 
the sake of clearness. 1 JJut he thereby brought Paul into 
direct verbal conflict with James, who says (2 : 24), " by works 
a man is justified, and not only by faith" ("-nit-Jit (lurch den 
Glaulen allcia" 1 ). Jt is well known that Luther deemed it 
impossible to harmonize the two apostles in this article, and 
characterized the Epistle of James as an "epistle of straw,* 
because it had no evangelical character ("keine evatiyeliische 

lie therefore insisted on this insertion in spite of all out 
cry against it. His defense is very characteristic. "If your 
papist," he says, 2 " makes much useless fuss about the word 
sola, alleiiii tell him at once : Doctor Martin Luther will have 
it so, and says: Papist and donkey are one thing; sic volo, 
sic juleo, sit pro rat tone voluntas. For we do not want to be 
pupils a ml followers of the Papists, but their masters and 
judges/ Then he goes on in the style of foolish boasting 
against the Papists, imitating the language of St. Paul in 
dealing with his Judaizing opponents (2 Cor. 11:22 sqq.) : 
"Are they doctors? so ami. Are they learned? so am I. 
Are they preachers? so am I. Are they theologians? so 
am I. Are they disputators? so am I. Are they philos 
ophers? so am I. Are they the writers of books? so am 
I. And I shall further boast: I can expound Psalms and 
Prophets; which they can not. I can translate; which they 
can not. . . . Therefore the word allein shall remain in my 

1 But lu> omitted aJlcin in Gal. 2: 10, where it mi^ht be just as well justi 
fied, and where the pre-Lutheran Bible reads ";/r ihn-cli <lcn Glauben." 
However correct in substance and as an inference, the insertion has no busi 
ness in the text as a translation. See Meyer on [Join. 3: 28, 5th ed., and 
Weiss, Oth ed. (1881), also my annotations to I.aime on Ilomans (p. ! )(>). 

- In his Saiil/n-jcf roin ])hnetxch<-}i, in the Erl.-Frkf. ed., vol. LXV., p. 
1<>7 s i |- It was published in September, l.">:;o, with special reference to 
Kmser. whom he does not name, but calls "the scribbler from Dresden" 
(" dtr dresdenvr .N/cMir"). 


New Testament, and though all pope-donkeys (Papstesel") 
should get furious and foolish, they shall not turn it out." 1 

The Protestant and anti-Koinisli eharaeter of Luther s New 
Testament is undeniable in his prefaces, his discrimination 
between chief books and less important hooks, his change 
of the traditional order, and his unfavorable judgments on 
James, Hebrews, and Revelation. 2 It is still more apparent in 
his marginal notes, especially on the I auline Kpistles, where 
he emphasizes throughout the difference between the law and 
the gospel, and the doctrine of justification by faith alone; and 
on the Apocalypse, where he finds the papacy in the beast 
from the abyss (eh. 1-j), and in the Babylonian harlot (ch. 
IT). 3 Tin- anti-papal explanation of the Apocalypse became 
for a long- time almost traditional in Protestant commentaries. 

On the other hand, the Roman Catholic translators used 
the same liberty of marginal annotations and pictorial illus 
trations in favor of the doctrii*-s and usages of their own 
church. Kmser s New Testament is full of anti-Lutheran 
glosses. In Rom. 3 : -S, he protests on the margin against 
Luther s <i//t / n, and says, "Paul by the words without works 
of the law " does not mean that man is saved by faith alone, 
without good works, but only without works of the law, that 
is, external circumcision and other Jewish ceremonies." lie 

1 The Revisers of tli I l-n^rl ild retained tin 1 interpolated (illcin in Horn. 
8:2S, the 7iur in 4 : !">, and tin- incorrect rendering in ;>:L .~), L Ci, a striking 
proof of Luther s overpowering influence even over conscientious critical 
scholars in (iermany. Dr. (irimm, the lexicographer (/./., p. -IS), unjustly 
censures Meyer and Stier for omittinij the word nlhin. I have an old copy of 
Luther s Testament, \\ithout titlepaire. hefore me, where the word allcin is 
printed in larger type with a marginal linger pointing to it. 

2 The Prefaces are coll.-cted in the 7th volume of Ilindseil s edition of the 
LutluT IJihle, ;uid in the ti. Jd volume of the Krlanicen ed. of Luther s works. 
The most important is his preface to the Kpistle to the Koinans, and his most 
Objectionable that to the Kpistle of .lames. 

* He adds in the marginal note on ch. 17: " /// z< / /> t cr <U< ri ntsrt,(> 
Kirrtt, i,, ihr< r (;,.l<ilt n,, ! ll <li> n;- lmnint wll tn-nli-n." His friend 
Cranach, in the ac^ompanyiii , picture in the first ed.. and a No in the ed. of 
1S.">. represents the harlot as ridinn on a dragon with a triple crown on her 


therefore confines the "law" here to the ritual law, and 
"works " to Jewish works ; while, according to the best mod 
ern commentators, Paul means the whole law, moral as well 
as ceremonial, and all works commanded by the law. And 
yet even in the same chapter and throughout the whole Epis 
tle to the Romans, Emser copies verbatim Luther s version 
for whole verses and sections ; and where he departs from 
his language, it is generally for the worse. 

The same may be said of the other two German Catholic 
Bibles of the age of the Reformation. They follow Luther s 
language very closely within the limits of the Vulgate, and 
yet abuse him in the notes. Dr. Dietenberger adds his com 
ments in smaller type after the chapters, and agrees with 
Emser s interpretation of Rom. 3 : 28. 1 Dr. Eck s German 
Bible has few notes, but a strongly anti-Protestant preface. 2 

To be just, we must recognize the sectarian imperfections 
of Bible versions, arising partly from defective knowledge, 
partly from ingrained prejudices. A translation is an inter 
pretation. Absolute reproduction is impossible in any work. 3 
A Jew will give a version of the Old Testament differing 

1 mil ifi beidcr AUt unnd Newm Testamenten,fleissiy, treulich vn C/trist- 
ItcJt ntic/i (illcr Inn (. liristlirltfr Ktrchen yeli<ibtcr Tr<iuxl<tfion, inlt Aunsle- 
yuny ditcher dxnckeler ort nn<l bcHxernny vieler verriickter wort und spriich. 
. . . DnrcJi J). Jolidn Dietenberyer, new verdeutscht. Golf zu cwiyer 
ehrc nniid wolfnrth xcincr hell. Christlichen KircJicn . , Mej*nz, 1534, 
fol. From ;i ropy in the Union Seminary (Van Ess library). Well printed 
and illustrated. 

2 I have before me three copies of as many folio editions of Eck s Bible, 
l.">:]7, l.V)0. and lo.jS, bearing the title: Itibcl Alt mid New Tcxtfunent, nach 
di ni Tc,ct in d<r liriliycn Kirclicn yebraucht, dnrcli Doctor Johan Ecken, mit 
J/C/NN, ttnf hocJitent.xch verdolmclscltt, etc. They were printed at Ingolstadt, 
and au r ree in the number of pages (1(). }5), and vary only in the date of pub 
lication. They contain in an appendix the Prayer of Manasseh, the Third 
Look of Maccabees, and the spurious Epistle of Paul to the Laodieeans. 

3 Then? is an Italian proverb that translators are traitors (Traduttori tra- 
ditor t). Jerome speaks of versionex which are ei-crxioncs. As Trench says, 
there are in every translation "unavoidable losses inherent in the nature of 
the task, in the relations of one language to the other, in the lack of accu 
rate correlations between them, in the different schemes of their construc 


from that of a Christian, because they look upon it in a dif 
ferent light. the one with his face turned backward, the 
other with his face turned forward. A Jew cannot under 
stand thf Old Testament till he becomes a Christian, and 
sees in it a prophecy and type of Christianity. No syna 
gogue would use a Christian version, nor any church a Jewish 
"version. So the New Testament is rendered differently 
by scholars of the Greek, Latin, and Protestant churches. 
And even where they agree in words, there is a difference in 
the pervading spirit. They move, as it were, in a different 
atmosphere. A Roman Catholic version must be closely con 
formed to the Latin Vulgate, which the Council of Trent 
puts on an eijual footing with the original text. 1 A Protes 
tant version is bound only by the original text, and breathes 
an air of freedom from traditional restraint. The Roman 
Church will never use Luther s Version or King James s 
Version, and could not do so without endangering her creed; 
nor will German Protestants use Emser s and Eck s Ver 
sions, or English Protestants the Douay Version. The 
Romanist must become evangelical before he can fully appre 
hend the free spirit of the gospel as revealed in the New 

There is, however, a gradual progress in translation, which 
goes hand in hand with the progress of the understanding of 
the I ible. Jerome s Vulgate is an advance upon the Itala, 
both in accuracy and Latinity ; the Protestant Versions of 
the sixteenth century are an advance upon the Vulgate, in 

1 Hence the stiffness of literalism and the abundance of Latinisms in the 
Rhemish V.-rsioii of tin- X. T. (first published in l.*2, second ed. KXHJ, 
third ed. at Douay, 1021), such as " supersubstantial bread" for daily or 
needful bread (Jerome introduced supersubxtuntialiii for the dim cult ixioi-oiof 
in the Lord s Prayer. Matt. <!: 11, but retained (jnitli<li<innx in Luke), trans 
migration of Babylon, impudicity, coinquinations, populations, agnition, 
cogitation, prepuce, pasche, exinanite, contristate, domesticate, exemplars of 
the coelestials, etc. !*>ome of them have been silently removed in modern 
editions. The notes of the older editions abound in fulminatious against 


spirit and in idiomatic reproduction; the revisions of the 
nineteenth century are an advance upon the versions of the 
sixteenth, in philological and historical accuracy and consist 
ency. A future generation will make a still nearer approach 
to the original text in its purity and integrity. If the Holy 
Spirit of God shall raise the Church to a higher plane of faith 
and love, and melt the antagonisms of human creeds into the 
one creed of Christ, then, and not before then, may we expect 
perfect versions of the oracles of God. 



Aii official revision of Luther s version was inaugurated, after long pre 
vious agitation and discussion, by the "Eisenach German Evangelical 
Church Conference," in ISO- ), and published under the title: Die liibd oder 
die yanzc Heili /e Scftrift de$ Alien itnd ^Xeuen Testaments riach der deutfich- 
en Ueberxetziiny 1). Martin Luther*. Halle (Buchhandlung des Waisen- 
hauses), 1883. It is called the Probebibel. The revised Xew Testament had 
been published several years before, and is printed by Dr. O. von Gebharclt 
together with the Greek text, in his Novum Tesiameniiun Grace et Ger- 
inanice, Leipzig, 1881. 

The revision was prepared with extraordinary care, but in an ultra-con 
servative spirit, by a number of distinguished biblical scholars appointed by 
the ecclesiastical authorities of the German governments, eleven for the Xew 
Testament (Xitzsch, Twesten, Beysehlag, Kiehm, Ahlfeld, Bruckner, Meyer, 
Xiemann, Fronmiiller, Schroder, Kostlin), and over twenty for the Old Testa 
ment, including some who had also served in the Xew Testament company 
(Tholuck, Schlottmann, Riehm, Dillmann, Kleinert, Delitzsch, Bertheau, 
Diisterdieck, Kamphausen, Baur of Leipzig, Ahlfeld, Thenius, Kiibel, 
Kapff, .Schroder, Uiestel, Grimm, Kiilm, Hoffmann, Clausen, Grill). Dorner, 
Monekeberg, and Karl Frommann took a very active part as counsellors and 
promoters, the last (an eminent Germanist and Luther-scholar, but with 
strong archaic tastes) in the linguistic portion. 

The work was very severely criticised by opposite schools for changing too 
much or too little, and was recommitted by the Eisenach Conference of 
1880 for final action. The history of this revision is told in the preface and 
introduction to the Probebibd, and in Grimm s Gcachichte der Intli. liibel- 
iibersetzunf/, Jena, 1884, pp. 48-70. 

The Anglo-American revision of the Authorized English Version of 1611 
was set in motion by the Convocation of Canterbury, and carried out 111 fifteen 


year*, between ls7 and 1S$.~>, by two committees, ono in England and one 
in tin- Tinted States (each divided into two companies, one f<>r the Old 
Testament, one f -r the New, and each consisting of scholars of various Prot 
estant denominations). Dr. Dorncr, on his visit to America in 1*7:5, desired 
to briii .: about a regular eo-operat ion of the two revision movements, but it 
was found impracticable, and confined to private correspondence. 

The two revisions are similar in spirit and aim; and as far as they run 
parallel, they au r n e in most of the improvements. Doth aim to replace the. 
old version in public and private use; but both depend for ultimate success 
on the verdict of the churches for which they were prepared. They passed 
through the same purgatory of hostile criticism both from conservative and 
progressive quarters. They mark a great progress of bililical scholarsllip, 
ami tin- immen-e labor In-stowed upon them can never be lost. The differ 
ence of the two arises from the difference of the two originals on which they 
are based, ami it- relation to the community. 

Tli>- authori/.ed (ierman and English versions are equally idiomatic, classi 
cal, and popular: but the (Jerinan is personal, and inseparable from the over 
awing inlluence of Luther, which forbids radical changes. The English is 
impersonal, and embodies the labors of three generations of biblical scholars 
from Tyndale to the forty-seven revisers of King .lames, a circumstance 
which is favorable to new improvements in the same line. In (Jermany, 
where theology is cultivated as a science for a class, the interest in revision 
is confined to scholars: and (ierman scholars, however independent and bold 
In theory, are very conservative and timid in practical questions. In Eng 
land and America, where theology moves in close contact with the life 
of the churches, revision challenges the attention of the laity which claims 
the fruits of theological progress. 

Hence the A ii glo- A nierican revision is much more thorough and complete. 
It embodies the results of the latest critical and exegetieal lea mini:. It 
involves a reconstruction of the original text, which the Oerman Revision 
leaves almost untouched, as if all the pains-taking labors of critics since the 
days of Hi-nu el and (Jriesbadi down to Lachmann and Tischeiidorf (not to 
speak of the equally important labors of English scholars from Mill and 
Bent l-y to Westcott and Hort) had been in vain. 

As to translation, the English Revision removes not only misleading 
errors, but corrects the far more numerous inaccuracies and inconsistencies 
In the minor details of grammar and vocabulary; while the (Jerman Revision 
is con lined to the correction of acknowledged mistranslations. The (ierman 
Revision of the New Testament numbers only about two hundred changes, 
the Anglo-American thirty-six thousand. The revised (Jerman New Testa 
ment is widely circulated: but of the provisional /V.., ,, /./V/. which embraces 
both Testaments, only five thousand copies were printed and sold by the 
Canstein Hibelan-talt at Halle (as I learned there frmn Dr. Kramer. July. 
l&SO). Of the revised English New Testament, a million copies were ordered 


from the Oxford University Press before publication, and three million copies 
were sold in less than a year (1881). The text was telegraphed from Xew 
York to Chicago in advance of the arrival of the book. Over thirty reprints 
appeared in the United States. The Revised Old Testament excited less 
interest, but tens of thousands of copies were sold on the day of publication 
(U-^5), and several American editions were issued. The Bible, after all, is 
the most popular book in the world, and constantly increasing in power and 
influence, especially with the English-speaking race. (For particulars on the 
English Revision, see JSchaffs Companion to t/<e Greek Testament and the 
LV///W/ JVrx/o//. New York, 3d ed., 188S, pp. 404 sqq., and the extensive 
Revision literature, pp. 371 sqq.) 

(34. MdancWwns Tlieolof/y. 

See Literature in 38, pp. 182 sq. The 21st vol. of the "Corpus Refor- 
matorum (11UO t ol. pages) is devoted to the various editions of Melanch- 
thon s Loci Thr-olo /ict, and gives bibliographical lists (fol. 59 sqq.; 501 sqq.), 
and also an earlier outline from an unpublished MS. Comp. CAKL SCHMIDT, 
Phil. Mel., pp. 64-75; and on Melanchthon s doctrinal changes, SCIIAFF, 
Creeds of Christendom, vol. I. 261 sqq. 

While Luther translated the New Testament on the Wart- 
burg. Melanchthon prepared the first system of Protestant 
theology at Wittenberg. Both drew from the same fountain, 
and labored fur the same end, but in different ways. Luther 
built up the Reformation among the people in the German 
tongue ; Melanchthon gave it methodical shape for scholars 
by his Latin writings. The former worked in the quarries, 
and cut the rough blocks of granite ; the latter constructed 
the blocks into a habitable building. Luther expressed a 
modest self-estimate, and a high estimate of his friend, when 
he said that his superiority was more "in the rhetorical way," 
while Melanchthon was "a, better logician and reasoner." 

Melanchthon finished his "Theological Common-Places" 
or Ground-Thoughts (Loci Communes or Loci Theolof/ici)^ in 
April, I.j21. and sent the proof-sheets to Luther on the 
Wartburg. They appeared for the first time before the 
close of that year. 1 

1 Under the title: Loci communes rerwn the oloy tear urn seu hypotyposd 
t, Wittenberg, 1521. Bindseil puts the publication in December. 


This book marks an epoch in the history of theology. It 
grew out of exegetical lectures on the Epistle to the Romans, 
the Manila Charta of the evangelical system. It is an exposi 
tion of the leading doctrines of sin and grace, repentance 
and salvation. It is clear, fresh, thoroughly biblical, and 
practical. Its main object is to show that man cannot be 
saved by works of the law or by his own merits, but only by 
the free grace of God in Christ as revealed in the gospel. It 
presents tin- living soul of divinity, in striking contrast to the 
drv bones of degenerate scholasticism with its endless theses, 

* O 

antitheses, definitions, divisions, and subdivisions. 

The first edition was written in the interest of practical 
Christianity rather than scientific theology. It is meagre in 
the range <>f topics, and defective in execution. It is con 
fined to anthropology and soteriology, and barely mentions 
the metaphysical doctrines of the Trinity and the incarnation, 
as transcendent mysteries to be adored rather than curiously 
discussed. It has a polemical bearing against the Romanists, 
in view of the recent condemnation of Luther by the Sor- 
bonne. It also contains some crude and extreme opinions 
which the author afterwards abandoned. Altogether in its 
first shape it was an unripe production, though most remark 
able if we consider the youth of the author, who was then 
only twentv-four years of age. 

Melanchthon shared at first Luther s antipathy to scholas 
tic theology; but he learned to distinguish between pure and 
legitimate scholasticism and a barren formalism, as also 
between the Aristotelian philosophy itself and the skeleton 
of it which was worshiped as an idol in the universities at 
that time. lie knew especially the value of Aristotle s ethics, 
wrote a commentary on the same Qlol20), and made important 

I havo a covv of tlio Leipzig f<1. of M.I). MX., \vliirh innnliors S.">s jia^os 
without imlir.-s. and bears t ho title: L<><-i l r<i rlfmi Tl<< i>ln ji<-i. \nnrilenno 
euro. <t ilili /entin snniimi ri rn<niiti, ninllimjitc in locis copivxc illuxtrati, cum 
c dixputatiunin t/c conjicjio, etc. 


original contributions to the science of Christian ethics in his 
Philosophies Moralis Epitome (1535). ! 

Under his improving hand, the Loci assumed in subsequent 
editions the proportions of a full, mature, and well-propor 
tioned system, stated in calm, clear, dignified language, freed 
from polemics against the Sorbonne and contemptuous llings 
at the schoolmen and Fathers. He embraced in twenty-four 
chapters all the usual topics from God and the creation to 
the resurrection of the body, with a concluding chapter on 
Christian liberty. He approached the scholastic method, and 
even ventured, in opposition to the Anti-Trinitarians, on a 
new speculative proof of the Holy Trinity from psychological 
analogies. He never forsakes the scriptural basis, but occa 
sionally quotes also the Fathers to show their supposed or 
real agreement with evangelical doctrines. 

Melanchthon s theology, like that of Luther, grew from 
step to step in the heat of controversy. Calvin s Institutes 
came finished from his brain, like Minerva out of the head 
of Jupiter. 

The Loci prepared the way for the Augsburg Confession 
(1530), in which Melanchthon gave to the leading doctrines 
official shape and symbolical authority for the Lutheran 
Church. But lie did not stop there, and passed through sev 
eral changes, which we must anticipate in order to form a 
proper estimate of that work. 

The editions of his theological manual are divided into 
three classes : 1, those from 1521 to 1535 ; 2, those from 1535 
to 1544 ; 3, those from 1544 to 1559. The edition of 1535 
(dedicated to King Henry VIII. of England, and translated 
into German by Justus Jonas) was a thorough revision. 
This and the editions which followed embody, besides addi 
tions in matter and improvements in style, important modi- 

1 See his ethical writings in vol. XYI. of his Opera, in the " Corp. Re 
form.," and a discussion of their merits in Wuttke s llandbuch der christl 
Sittenlehre, 3d ed. (1674), I. 148 sqq. 


flections of his views on predestination and free will, on the 
real presence, and on justification by faith. He gave up 
necessitarianism Tor synergisni, the corporeal presence in the 
eucharist for a spiritual real presence, and solifidianism for 
the necessity of good works. In the first and third article 
lie made an approach to the Roman-Catholic svstem, in the 
second to Calvinism. 

The changes were the result of his continued study of the 
Bible and the Fathers, and his personal conferences with 
Roman and Reformed divines at Augsburg and in the col 
loquies of Frankfort, Ilagenau, Worms, and Uatisbon. lie 
calls them elucidations of obscurities, moderations of extreme 
views, and sober second thoughts. 1 

1. lie denied at first, with Luther and Augustin, all free 
dom of the human will in spiritual things. 2 He even held 
the Stoic doctrine of the necessary occurrence of all actions, 
bad as well as good, including the adultery of David and the 
treason of Judas as well as the conversion of Paul. 3 

IJut on closer examination, and partly under the influence 
of Erasmus, he abandoned this stoic fatalism as a danger 
ous error, inconsistent with Christianity and morality. He 
taught instead a co-operation of the divine and human will 
in the work of conversion ; thus anticipating Arminianism, 
and approaching the older semi-Pelagianism, but giving the 
initiative to divine grace. " (Jod," he said in 1535, "is not the 
cause of sin, and does not will sin ; but the will of the Devil 

1 See his letters to his friend C aini-niriiis, 2 Sept. \ >?S> ("Corp. Kef." II. 
9oO), and Dec. iM, !;>>."> (tt>. II. 10J7): /v/" mine in >IK tx Lacix innlla initi- 
rjari. . . . * In L >cin )iicii t:i<Icor Imln-rn <"< vripfir 0poir/<5u< . " His letters 
are intcrspcrsi-il with Greek words and classical miiinisct-ncfs. 

2 Lor. / /K O/., l.*^I, A. 7: " QndiKlo jiii lrin OHIHIIKJIHI cn-niinit, wrfw/v o 
jnstti fliriiinin prcedcxtindtinnejH rr< tiinnt, nnlln cut coluntutis naxtrac W>er- 
fcw." He n-f.-rs to KOIII. . and 11 and Matt. U):ii!. 

3 In hix ( <nn. in KI>. <t<l lioiiuin., 1"*1 1, cap. S: " It<t<in< x!t tine c> rttt .sf/i- 
tenCut, a J)fo t\<-rl omn ni tain l>ona <JII<IIH mala. . . . Cnnxtnt J)citm <>i)mi<i 
facerc nun jifrmixnirf m<l jtottnttir, ltd nt nit r; /. 1 * ]>rn[triinn ujmx ,/ / /<c 
pnxlitio, sh-nt I unli rocatin." Lutln-r published this coinnientary without 
MelaDchthoa 3 knowledge, and humorously dedicated it to him. 


a:id tlif will of man are the causes of sin." 1 Human nature 
is radically, but not absolutely and hopelessly, corrupt ; it 
can not without the aid of the Holy Spirit produce spiritual 
affections such as the fear and love of God, and true obe 
dience; but it can accept or reject divine grace. God [ire- 
cedes, calls, moves, supports us ; but we must follow, and not 
resist. Three causes concur in the conversion, the word 
of God, the Holy Spirit, and the will of man. Melanchthon 
quotes from the Greek Fathers who lay great stress on human 
freedom, and he accepts Chrysostom s sentence : " God draws 
the willing." 

He intimated this synergistic view in the eighteenth article 
of the altered Augsburg Confession, and in the German edi 
tion of the Apology of the Confession. I>ut he continued 
to deny the meritoriousness of good works; and in the col 
loquy of Worms, 1557, lie declined to condemn the doctrine 
of the slavery of the human will, because Luther had adhered 
to it to the end. He was willing to tolerate it as a theolo 
gical opinion, although he himself had rejected it. 

2. As to the Lord s Supper, he first accepted Luther s view 
under the impression that it was supported by the ancient 
Church. I>ut in this he was shaken by CEcolampadius, who 
proved (1530) that the Fathers held different opinions, and 
that August in did not teach an oral manducation. After 
1534 he virtually gave up for himself, though lie would not 
condemn and exclude, the conception of a corporeal presence 
and oral manducation of the body and blood of Christ; and 
laid the main stress on the spiritual, yet real presence and 
communion with Christ. 

He changed the tenth article of the Augsburg Confession 
in 1540, and made it acceptable to Reformed divines by 
omitting the anti-Zwinglian clause. I>ut he never accepted 
the Zwinglian theory of a mere commemoration. His later 
eucharistic theory closely approached that of Calvin ; while 
on the subject of predestination and free will he differed from 


him. Calvin, who had written a preface to the French trans 
lation of the Loi-l Theologiei, expressed, in private letters, his 
surprise that so groat a theologian eouhl reject the Scripture 
doctrine of eternal predestination; yet they maintained an 
intimate friendship to the end, and proved that theological 
differences need not prevent religious harmony and fraternal 

3. Mclunchthon never surrendered the doctrine of justifica 
tion hy faith: hut he laid in his later years, in opposition to 
antinoinian excesses, greater stress on the necessity of good 
works of faith, not indeed as a condition of salvation and in a 
sense of acquiring merit, hut as an indispensable proof of the 
duty of obedience to the divine will. 

These doctrinal changes gave rise to bitter controversies 
after Luther s death, and were ultimately rejected in the 
Formula of Concord (1577), hut revived again at a later 
period. Luther himself never adopted and never openly 
opposed them. 

The L -><t of Melanchthon met from the start with extraor 
dinary favor. Edition after edition appeared in Wittenberg 
during the author s lifetime, the last from his own hand in the 
year 155 .*, besides a number of contemporaneous reprints at 
Uasel, Hagcnau, Strasshurg, Frankfurt, Leipzig, Halle, and 
manv editions after his death. 

Luther had an extravagant opinion of them, and even 
declared them worthy of a place in the canon. 1 He thought 
that his translation of the I>ible, and Melanchthon s L<-t\ weie 
tin. best outfit of a theologian, and almost superseded ail 
other books. 2 

1 " Inrlrhix lifxUun HOTI ftolion imtnortfililntc, *< <! i/nni/uc rinmne < cd* - 
ainntii-it diyniix." In tin- br^hmini, of !> >< rcn Ar>>itrio (\ >~ >), a#iin.-a 

- II.- says in his Ti^hrol n (Krl. nl., LIX. ^78 s<|.): li \\ <r itzt <h, Tl. - 
loyUH will wcrd<-n t der hut yraxxe \ i>rt/nil. I)mn cr*tlich hat cr di< lii>l, 
<}! ixt ini .so klur, </a.s.s > r .s//- knim lixcit <itm> </// Ilinderutit/. I)<irmi> lt /<< 
cr <l<irzu die lo<:<jit <:outiHum:y l li!l!]>i>i j </< km < r Jl< . i.s<;/ und wuhl, <.il*v 


The Loci became the text-book of Lutheran theology in 
the universities, and look the place of Peter Lombard s Sen 
tences. Strigel and Chemnitz wrote commentaries on them. 
Leonhard 1 1 utter likewise followed them, till he published a 
more orthodox compend (1(110) which threw them into the 
shade and even out of use during the seventeenth century. 

The theological manual of Mulanchthon proved a great 
help to the Reformation. The Romanists felt its power. 
Kmser called it a new Koran and a pest. In opposition to 
them, he and Eck wrote Loci Catholtci. 1 

Melanchthon s Loci are the ablest theological work of the 
Lutheran Church in the sixteenth century. Calvin s In&ti- 
t)iti-y ( 153G) equal them in freshness and fervor, and surpass 
them in completeness, logical order, philosophical grasp, and 
classical finish. 

It is remarkable that the first and greatest dogmatic sys 
tems of the Reformation proceeded from these two lay-theolo 
gians who were never ordained by human hands, but received 
the unction from on high. 2 So the twelve apostles were not 
baptized by Christ with water, but with the Holy Spirit on 
the day of Pentecost. 

(/".s.s er sie yar hn Nopfe habe. Wenn cr die z?m Stiicke hnf, so ist er (in 
Tfteoloyns, dcm v:eder der Teufel nock kein Kelzer etwas abbrechen kann, 
?/;/ / ilun sfeJict die (janze Theologia offi n, daw cr Alien, wets er tcill, darnac/t 
k-xen kann ad aedijicationem. Und fcnn er \rill, so mat/ cr ouch dazu l< sen 
Pftilippi Mehtnchthonis Commentarhun in JEjristnlam P<nili ((d Bomanos. 
Ln-xi t er alxdrnn d<i.rzu meincn coinmentarhnn in EjHstolam ad Gala tax und 
in Deuteronorniiiin, so </ebe ich ihm denn eloquent iain et copiam vcrbonnn. 
//// Jiiidct kt in lincli icntcr alien seinen Ijiichern, da die sunnna reliyionis 
(.I ll r die ijanzf. Tlteolo iia sofcin bei. einander ixt, al* in den low communibim. 
L< *et (die Patrcx mid Scntentiariox, so !xt c.s dorhAUts nirltt* duyeycn. 
Si ii i ;,s7 niclioi l/bcr post scrintnnnti nanctam, (jnain ipxinx loci communes. 
Philijijinx ist ei)</< r <j<snannet denn ich; die puanat ct docet ; ich bin mthr 
e ni Rhetoricnx oder ein MV/.scArr [Deutscher?]" 

1 Kck s Loci Com in nncs adrersus Luthcranos, Landshtit, 1525, passed 
through many editions. 

2 Melanchthon was simply professor, first of Greek, then of theology. 
Calvin WHS destined by his father for the clerical profession, and he received 
the tonsure ; but there is 110 record of his ordination for the priesthood. 


r>;>. Frott xtant Radicalism. Disturbance* at Erfurt. 

I. Letters of Li TiiKH from May, l.VJl, to March, loiiii, to Melanchtbon, 

Link, Lanirf, Spulatin, etc., in I)e Wette, vol. II. 

II. F. \V. KAMI-X IIII.TK: Die I nifcrnitnt Erfurt in thrcin Verfi. zn /<//< 
llniixiniHuni* nn<l <l>-r Reformation. Trier, iSjS. Second part, ehs. III. 
and IV. up. HH; siq. 

III. Biographies of Andreas Bodcnstein von Carlstadt, by Fi : <si.ix (17TH), 
,L\,i-:i: (Stuttirurt, !<> >), KKHKAM (in Iler/.o- 11 , VII. ">:>:) s-jij.). 

IV. (HI>I:I.I;K. IV. t )l-(J ) (Am. ed.). M.vmiKi.NKKK, clis. X. and XL 
(I. I)": , s(|(|.). MKIU.E i/Arn., Bk. IX. ehs. d-S. KOSTI.IX, Bk. IV. 
chs. :] and I (I. 4 J4 sriq.). HANKK, II. 7-iiC,. JANSSKX, II. lio4-2L ; T. 

While Luther and Melanchthon laid u sulid foundation for 
an evangelical ehurcli and evangelical theology, their work 
was endangered by the destructive zeal of friends who turned 
the reformation into a revolution. The best thing may be 
undone by being overdone. Freedom is a two-edged sword, 
and liable to the worst abuse as well as to the best use. 
Where God builds a church, savs a proverb, the Devil builds 
a chapel dose bv. lint the work of destruction was over 
ruled for the consolidation of the Reformation. Old rotten 
buildings had to be broken down before a new one could be 

The Reformation during its first five years was a battle of 
words, not of deeds. It scattered the seeds of new institu 
tions all over Germany, but the old forms and usages still 
remained. The new wine had not yet burst the old skin 
bottles. The Protestant soul dwelt in the Catholic bodv. 
The apostles after the day of Pentecost continued to visit the 
temple and the synagogue, and to observe circumcision, 
the sabbath, and other customs of the fathers, hoping for the 
conversion of all Israel, until they wen? cast out by tin- .J-\v- 
ish hierarchy. So the Protestants remained in external com 
munion with the mother Church, attending Latin mass, bowing 
before tin; transubstantiated elements on the altar, praving 
the Ave Maria, worshiping saints, pictures, and crueilixes, 


m akin or pilorimacres to holy shrines, observing 1 the festivals of 

O A o O / O 

tiie Roman calendar, and conforming to the seven sacraments 
which accompanied them at every step of life from the cradle 
to the grave. The bishops were still in charge of their dio 
ceses, and unmarried priests and deacons performed all the 
ecclesiastical functions. The convents were still occupied by 
monks and nuns, who went through their daily devotions and 
ascetic exercises. The outside looked just as before, while 
the inside had undergone a radical change. 

This was the case even in Saxony and at Wittenberg, the 
nursery of the new state of things. Luther himself did not 
at first contemplate any outward change. lie labored and 
hoped for a reformation of faith and doctrine within the 
Catholic Church, under the lead of the bishops, without a 
division ; but he was now cast out by the highest authorities, 
and came gradually to see that he must build a new structure 
on the new foundation which he had laid by his writings and 
by the translation of the New Testament. 

The negative part of these changes, especially the abolition 
of the mass and of monasticism, was made by advanced radi 
cals among his disciples, who had more zeal than discretion, 
and mistook liberty for license. 

While Luther was confined on the Wartbnrg, his followers 
were like children out of school, like soldiers without a cap 
tain. Some of them thought that lie had stopped half way, 
and that they must complete what he had begun. They took 
the work of destruction and reconstruction into their own 
inexperienced and unskillful hands. Order gave way to con 
fusion, and the Reformation was threatened with disastrous 

The first disturbances broke out at Erfurt in June, 1521, 
shortly after Luther s triumphant passage through the town 
on his way to Worms. Two young priests were excommuni 
cated for taking part in the enthusiastic demonstrations. 
This created the greatest indignation. Twelve hundred stu- 


dents, workmen, and riiiVians attacked and demolished in a 
few days sixty houses of tlie priests, who escaped violence 
only by flight. 1 

The magistrate looked (jiiietly on, as if in league with the 
insurrection. Similar scenes of violence were repeated during 
the summer. The monks under the lead of the Augustin- 
ians, forgetting their vows, left the convents, laid aside the 
monastic dress, and took up their abode among the people 
to work for a living, or to become a burden to others, or to 
preach the new faith. 

Luther saw in these proceedings the work of Satan, who 
was bringing shame and reproach on the gospel. 2 lie feared 
that many left the cloister for the same reason for which 
the\ had entered, namely, from love of the belly and carnal 
freedom. 3 

During these troubles C rot us, the enthusiastic admirer of 
Luther, resigned the rectorship of the university, left Krfurt, 
and afterwards returned to the mother Church. The Peasants 
War of 1525 was another blow. Kobanus, the Latin poet 
who had greeted Luther on his entry, accepted a call to 
Niirnberg. The greatest celebrities left the city, or were dis 
heartened, and died in poverty. 

From this time dates the decay of the university, once the 
flourishing seat of humanism and patriotic aspirations. It 
never recovered its former prosperity. 

1 KampschultP, I.e., II. 117 sqq., gives a full account of this PfaffenntuYin 
ami its consequences. 

2 S.v his l tt-rs to Mclaiu hthon and Spalatin, in Do W-tte, II. 7 s<j., :)1. 
To tli<- latter he wrote: " Krfordid Sdtnmts .xn/.x Ntu<l!in n<il>ix inni<litttittt cut, 
ut nnntrim timid fama innrrrctj wl nihil projlciet : n<>n sunt iwstri, <iui hwc 


* Li-tter to Lunge, March ^, 102^, in DC \Vette, 11. 170. 


GO. The Revolution at Wittenberg. Carhtadt and the 
New Prophets. 

See Lit. in 05. 

In Wittenberg the same spirit of violence broke out under 
the lead of Luther s older colleague, Andreas Carlstadt, 
known to us from his ill success at the Leipzig disputation. 
He was a man of considerable originality, learning, elo 
quence, zeal, and courage, but eccentric, radical, injudicious, 
ill-balanced, restless, and ambitious for leadership. 

He taught at first the theology of mediaeval scholasticism, 
but became under Luther s influence a strict Augustinian, 
and utterly denied the liberty of the human will. 

He wrote the first critical work on the canon of the Scrip 
tures, and anticipated the biblical criticism of modern times. 
He weighed the historic evidence, discriminated between 
three orders of books as of first, second, and third dignity, 
putting the Hagiographa of the Old Testament and the seven 
Antilegomena of the New in the third order, and expressed 
doubts on the Mosaic authorship of the Pentateuch. He 
based his objections to the Antilegomena, not on dogmatic 
grounds, as Luther, but on the want of historical testimony ; 
his opposition to the traditional canon was itself traditional ; 
he put ante-Nicene against post-Nicene tradition. This book 
on the canon, however, was crude and premature, and passed 
out of sight. 1 

He invented some curious and untenable interpretations 
of Scripture, e.g., of the words of institution of the Lord s 
Supper. He referred the word " this," not to the bread, but 
to the body of Christ, so as to mean : " I am now ready to 
offer this (body) as a sacrifice in death." He did not, how- 

1 Lihcllus <Jr Canonicis Scriptnris, Wittenb. 1520; also in German: Wclche 
JlucJicr // ///</ n.nd bUdisdi ftcinil. Comp. Weiss, Einleituny m .s N. T. (1880), 
p. 109, and Ilcuss, Histoirc da Canon (1803), 357 sqq. (Ilunter s transla 
tion, p. 330 sq.) 


ever, publish this view till 1524, and afterwards made 
common cause with Zwingli. 

Carlstadt preached and wrote, during Luther s absence, 
against celibacy, monastic vows, and the mass. At Christ 
mas, 1521, he omitted in the service the most objectionable 
parts of the canon of the mass, and the elevation of the host, 
and distributed both wine and bread to a large congregation. 
lie announced at the same time that he would lay aside the 
priestly dress and other ceremonies. Two days afterwards 
he was engaged to the daughter of a poor nobleman in the 
presence of distinguished professors of the university, and 
on Jan. 2<>, 1522. he was married. lie gave improper notori 
ety to this act by inviting the whole university and the 
magistrate, and by publishing a book in justification of it. 

He was not, however, the first priest who openly burst the 
chains of celibacy. Bartholomews Bernhardi of Feldkirchen, 
a Wittenberg licentiate and newly elected 2*rol*t at Kemberg, 
and two other priests of less reputable character, had pre 
ceded him in 1521. Justus Jonas followed the example, and 
took a wife Feb. 10, 1522, to get rid of temptations to im 
purity (1 Cor. 7:12). Luther approved of these marriages, 
but did not intend at that time to follow the example. 

Carlstadt went further, and maintained that no priest with 
out wife and children should receive an appointment (so he 
explained " ima K in 1 Tim. 3 : 2) ; that it was sin to com 
mune without the cup ; and that the monastic vow of celibacy 
was not binding, at least not before the sixtieth year of age, 
chastity being a free gift of God, and not at man s disposal. 
He introduced a new legalism instead of the old, in violation 
of the principle of evangelical liberty and charity. 

He also denounced pictures and images as dumb idols, 
which were plainly forbidden in the second commandment, 
and should be burnt rather than tolerated in the house of 
God. lit; induced the town council to remove them from 
the parish church ; but the populace anticipated the orderly 


removal, tore them down, hewed them to pieces, and burnt 
them. He assailed the fasts, and enjoined the people to eat 
meat and eggs on fast-days. He repudiated all titles and 
dignities, since Christ alone was our Master (Matt. 23:8). 
He expressed contempt for theology and all human learning, 
because God had revealed the truth unto babes (Matt. 11 : 
25), and advised the students to take to agriculture, and earn 
their bread in the sweat of their face (Gen. 3: 19). He cast 
away his priestly and academic robes, put on a plain citizen s 
dress, afterwards a peasant s coat, and had himself called 
brother Andrew. He ran close to the border of communism. 
He also opposed the baptism of infants. lie lost himself in 
the clouds of a confused mysticism and spiritualism, and 
appealed, like the Zwickau Prophets, to immediate inspira 

In the beginning of November, 1521, thirty of the forty 
monks left the Augustiman convent of Wittenberg in a 
rather disorderly manner. One wished to engage in cabinet- 
making, and to marry. The Augustinian monks held a con 
gress at Wittenberg in January, 1522, and unanimously 
resolved, in accordance with Luther s advice, to give liberty 
of leaving or remaining in the convent, but required in either 
case a life of active usefulness by mental or physical labor. 

The most noted of these ex-monks was Gabriel Zwilling 
or Didymus, who preached in the parish church during Lu 
ther s absence, and was esteemed by some as a second Luther. 
He fiercely attacked the mass, the adoration of the sacrament, 
and the whole system of monasticism as dangerous to salva 

About Christmas, 1521, the revolutionary movement was 
reinforced by two fanatics from Zwickau, Nicolaus Storch, 
a weaver, and Marcus Thomii Stiibner. 1 The latter had 
previously studied with Melanchthon, and was hospitably 

1 Marcus (Marx) Thomii and Stiibner are not two distinct persons, but 
identical. See Kostlin s note, vol. 1. 8U4 sq. 


entertained l>v him. A few weeks afterwards Thomas 
Miinzer. a inilleiinarian enthusiast and eloquent demagogue, 
who figures prominently in the Peasants 1 War, appeared in 
Wittenberg for a short time. lie had stirred up a religious 
excitement among the weavers of Zwickau in Saxony on the 
Bohemian frontier, perhaps in some connection with the 
Hussites or Bohemian Brethren, and organized the forces of 
a new dispensation by electing twelve apostles and seventy- 
two disciples. But the magistrate interfered, and the leaders 
had to leave. 

These Zwickau Prophets, as they were called, agreed witli 
Carlstadt in combining an inward mysticism with practical 
radicalism. They boasted of visions, dreams, and direct 
communications with God and the Angel Gabriel, disparaged 
the written word and regular ministry, rejected infant bap 
tism, and predicted the overthrow of the existing order of 
things, and the near approach of a democratic millennium. 

We may compare Carlstadt and the Zwickau Prophets with 
the Fifth Monarchy Men in the period of the English Com 
monwealth, who were likewise millennarian enthusiasts, and 
attempted, in opposition to Cromwell, to set up the * King 
dom of Jesus or the fifth monarchy of Daniel. 

Wittenberg was in a very critical condition. The magis 
trate was discordant and helpless. Amsdorf kept aloof. Me- 
lanchthon was embarrassed, and too modest and timid for 
leadership. lie had no confidence in visions and dreams, 
but could not satisfactorily answer the objections to infant 
baptism, which the prophets declared useless because a 
foreign faith of parents or sponsors could not save the child. 
Luther got over this difficulty by assuming that the Holy 
Spirit wrought faith in the child. 

The Elector was requested to interfere ; but lie dared not, 
as a layman, decide theological and ecclesiastical questions. 
He preferred to let things take their natural course, and 
trusted in the overruling providence of God. He believed in 


Gamaliel s counsel, which is good enough in the preparatory 
and experimental stages of a new movement. His strength 
lay in a wise, cautious, peaceful diplomacy. But at this time 
valor was the better part of discretion. 

The only man who could check the wild spirit of revolu 
tion, and save the ship of the Reformation, was Luther. 

G7. Luther returns to Wittenberg. 
WALCII, XV. 2374-2403. DE WETTE, II. 137 sqq. 

Luther was informed of all these disturbances. He saw 
the necessity of some changes, but regretted the violence 
with which they had been made before public opinion was 
prepared, and he feared a re-action which radicalism is always 
likely to produce. The Latin mass as a sacrifice, with the 
adoration of the host, the monastic institution, the worship 
of saints, images and relics, processions and pilgrimages, and 
a large number of superstitious ceremonies, were incompati 
ble with Protestant doctrines. Worship had sooner or later 
to be conducted in the vernacular tongue ; the sacrifice of 
the mass must give way to a commemorative communion ; 
the cup must be restored to the laity, and the right of mar 
riage to the clergy. He acquiesced in these changes. But 
about clerical vestments, crucifixes, and external ceremonies, 
lie was indifferent ; nor did he object to the use of pictures, 
provided they were not made objects of worship. In such 
matters he asserted the right of Christian freedom, against 
coercion for or against them. As to the pretended revelations 
of the new prophets, he despised them, and maintained that 
an inspired prophet must either be ordinarily called by church 
authority, or prove his divine commission by miracles. 

He first went to Wittenberg in disguise, and spent three 
days there in December, 1521. He stayed under the roof of 
Amsdorf, and dared not show himself in the convent or on 
the street. 


When the disturbances increased, he felt it his duty to re 
appear openly on the arena of conflict. He saw from the 
Wartburg his own house burning, ajid hastened to extinguish 
the Humes. The Elector feared for his safety, as the Edict 
of Worms was still in force, and the Diet of Xiirnberg was 
approaching. lie ordered him to remain in his concealment. 
Luther was all his life an advocate of strict submission to 
the civil magistrates in their own proper sphere; but on this 
occasion he set aside the considerations of prudence, and 
obeyed the higher law of God and his conscience. His 
reply to the Elector (whom he never met personally) bears 
noble testimony to his sublime faith in God s all-ruling 
providence. It is dated Ash Wednesday (March 5, 1522), 
from Home, south of Leipzig. He wrote in substance as 
follows : 1 

"Grace and peace from God our Father and our Lord 
Jesus Christ, and my most humble service. 

kk Most illustrious, high-born Elector, most gracious Lord! 
I received the letter and warning of your Electoral Grace on 
Friday evening [Feb. 20], before my departure [March 1]. 
That your Electoral Grace is moved by the best intention, 
needs no assurance from me. I also mean well, but this is of 
no account. ... If I were not certain that we have the pure 
gospel on our side, I would despair. . . . Your Grace knows, 
if not, I make known to you, that I have the gospel, not 
from men, but from heaven through our Lord Jesus Christ. 
... I write this to apprise you that I am on my way to 
Wittenberg under a far higher protection than that of the 
Elector; and I have no intention of asking your Grace s 
support. Nay, I believe that I can offer your Highness better 
protection than your Highness can offer me. Did I think 
that I had to trust in the Elector, I should not come at all. 

1 In D WVtto, II. i:;7-lll. !) \Wtte rails tho letter "C/H Icwinvlcrungs- i/cs Ao/ic/i Glaubtnainuthca, com icvlchem Luther crfiillt 



The sword is powerless here. God alone must act without 
man s interference. He who has most faith will be the most 
powerful protector. As I feel your Grace s faith to be still 
weak, I can by no means recognize in you the man who is to 
protect and save me. Your Electoral Grace asks me, what 
you are to do under these circumstances? I answer, with all 
submission, Do nothing at all, but trust in God alone. . . . 
If your Grace had faith, you w r ould behold the glory of God ; 
but as you do not yet believe, you have not seen it. Let us 
love and glorify God forever. Amen." 

Being asked by the Elector to give his reasons for a return, 
he assigned, in a letter of March 7, from Wittenberg, 1 three 
reasons : the urgent written request of the church at Witten 
berg ; the confusion in his flock ; and his desire to prevent 
an imminent outbreak. "My second reason," he wrote, "is 
that during my absence Satan has entered my shcepfold, and 
committed ravages which I can not repair by writing, but only 
by my personal presence and living word. My conscience 
would not allow me to delay longer; I was bound to dis 
regard, not only your Highness s disfavor, but the whole 
world s wrath. It is my flock, the flock intrusted to me by 
God ; they are my children in Christ. I could not hesitate 
a moment. I am bound to suffer death for them, and will 
cheerfully with God s grace lay down my life for them, as 
Christ commands (John 10:12)." 

Luther rode without fear through the territory of his vio 
lent enemy, Duke George of Saxony, who was then urging 
the Elector to severe measures against him and the Witten- 
bergers. He informed the Elector that he would pass through 
Leipzig, as he once went to Worms, though it should rain 
Duke Georges for nine days in succession, each fiercer than 
the original in Dresden. 

He safely arrived in Wittenberg on Thursday evening, the 

1 De Wette, II. 141-144. 


Gth of March, full of faith and hope, and ready for a light 
against his false friends. 

On this journey he had on the 3d or 4th of March an 
interesting interview with two Swiss students, Kessler.and 
Spengler, in the tavern of the lilaek Hear at Jena. \Ve 
have an ueeoiint of it from one of them, John Kessler of St. 
Gallen, wh> afterwards beeaine a reformer of that eitv. 1 It 
contrasts very favorably with his subsequent dealings with 
the Swiss, especially with Zwingli, which were clouded by 
prejudice, and embittered by intolerance. The episode was 
purely private, and had no influence upon the course of 
event-.; but it reveals a characteristic trait in this mighty 
man, who even in critical moments of intense earnestness did 
not l<e his playful humor. We find the same combination 
of apparently opposite qualities when at Coburg he was 
watching the affairs of the Diet at Augsburg, and wrote a 
childlike 1 letter to his little Hans. Such harmless humor is 
like the light of the sun breaking through dark clouds. 

Tiie two Swiss, who had studied at Basel, were attracted by 
the fame of Luther and Melftiichthon, and traveled on foot 
to Wittenberg to hear them. They arrived at Jena after a 
terrible thunderstorm, fatigued and soaked through, ;md 
humbly sat down on a bench near the door of the guest- 
chamber, when they saw a knight seated at a table, sword in 
hand, and tin- Hebrew Psalter before him. Luther recog 
nized the Swiss by their dialect, kindly invited them to sit 
down at his side, and offered them a drink. He inquired 
whether Krasmus was still living in Basel, what he was doing, 
and what the people in Switzerland thought of Martin 
Luther. The students replied that some lauded him to the 

1 PnblMi. .l l.v Ui-riH-t. ./"//. A>.s.s/<r / """ Alli -intriti*. St. C:il!.-n, 
1820, ainl im.i-" fnllv l.y K. < ;<it/.iiu -r in K.-s^l.-r s S,iM,nt,i. St. (iallrn, I si li 
ami l>i s, J p;irN. S-. :i LT iod account in Ila ^cnbach s / </ . (rY.\-7/., pp. 1 tl 
<1 |. In tin* S. ] i \\, !!/.. |;iir liol.-l ;tt .!.-n;i, wlinv I st(.pp-,| a f.-\v d;iys in 
July. 1^<;, ti,,. Ijiihrixinhc " is still shoun with the likeucss of Lutlic-r, 
an ol>l liihlc, an.l K-sslfr s report. 

330 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A.I). 1517 TO 1530. 

skies as a great reformer; others, especially the priests, de 
nounced him as an intolerable heretic. During the conversa 
tion two traders came in ; one took from his pocket Luther s 
sermons on the Gospels and Epistles, and remarked that the 
writer must be either an anGfel from heaven or a devil from 


hell. At dinner Luther gave them a rare feast of reason and 
How of soul. The astonished students suspected that the 
mysterious knight was Ulrich von llutten, when Luther, 
turning to the host, smilingly remarked, fck Behold, I have 
become a nobleman over the night : these Swiss think that I 
am llutten: you take me for Luther. The next thing will 
be that 1 am Marcolfus." He gave his young friends good 
advice to study the biblical languages with Melanchthon, 
paid their bill, offered them first a glass of beer, but substi 
tuted for it a glass of wine, since the Swiss were not used to 
beer, and with a shake of the hand he begged them to remem 
ber him to Doctor Jerome Schurf, their countryman, at 
Wittenberg. When they wished to know the name of the 
sender of the salutation, he replied, Simply tell him that 
he who is coming sends greeting, and he will understand it." 

When the students a few days afterwards arrived at Wit 
tenberg, and called on Dr. Schurf to deliver the message 
from "him who is coming," they were agreeably surprised to 
lind Luther there with Melanchthon, Jonas, and Amsdorf. 
Luther greeted them heartily, and introduced them to Me 
lanchthon, of whom he had spoken at Jena. 

The same student lias left us a description of Luther s 
appearance at that time. lie was no more the meager, ema 
ciated monk as at the Leipzig disputation three years pre 
viously, 1 but, as Kessler says, "somewhat stout, yet upright, 
bending backwards rather than stooping, with a face upturned 
to heaven, with deep dark eyes and eyebrows, twinkling and 
sparkling like stars, so that one could hardly look steadily at 

1 See the description of Mosellanus, p. 180. 


them." l These 1 deep, dark eyes, full of strange fire, had struck 
Cardinal Cajetan at Augsburg, and Cardinal Aleander at 
Worms, as the eves of a demon. They made the same im 
pression on John Dantiscus, afterwards bishop of Culm and 
Ermeland, who on his return from Spain to Poland in \~) 2 -\ 
saw Luther in Wittenberg; he reported that his "eves were 
sharp, and had a certain terrible coruscation of lightning 
such as was seen now and then in demoniacs," and adds that 
4 *his features were like his books," and "his speech violent 
and full of scorn." But friends judged differently. Another 
student, Albert Burrer, who saw him after his return from 
the Wartburg, praises his mild, kindly countenance, his 
pleasant sonorous voice, his charming address, the piety of 
his words and acts, the power of his eloquence which moved 

every hearer not made of stone, and created a desire to hear 

08. LutJtcr restores Onler in. Wittenberg. The En<l of 

I. Ei /fit Srrmfnin <>f LCTIIEK preached from Sunday, March 7 (Inmcntil) to 

the next Siunlay (/V//mu*rere). aftT his return t> Wittenberg. The 
oldest editions, slightly varying in length, appeared 1-Vj:;. Altenb. ed., 
II. ;f. s.|.|.: W.M.. ii. XV. 2tL :;sj l- : xx - 1- : ^H. <,!.. XXVI 1 1. L "L - 
2s.*, (both recensions). LTTIIKK S I,<1t< r* to Spalatin, the Elector, and 
others from March. i:.>. in DK WI-.TTI:, II. 144 s.^. 

II. Of modern historians, MAKHKIM KI:. MKIM.K i Ai i;ni\K, HANKK, 

II A<. KM;A< ii, and KOSTLIX (I. .Vj"-"*! 1 ) may be compared. 

On the Sunday after his arrival, Luther ascended his old 
pulpit, and re-appeared before his enngregation <f citi/.ens 
and students. Wittenberg was a small place; but what In- 
said and did there, and what Calvin did afterwards in ( Jeneva, 
had the significance of a world-historical fact, more influential 
at that time than an encyclical from Koine. 

1 " )Hf tii-fcti, firfiii iirzt n Anr/cn //// Unnincn hlinzi inl un<l zwitz( rind 
V)ic fin Sttrii, / /.s.s lit nil I -nftl inn j -n nii /i xi Ut ll ICtTC/C /(." 

2 Kostlin, I. .">:;;, with references, p. NI.">. 


Protestantism had reached a very critical juncture. Lu 
ther or Carlstadt, reformation or revolution, the written Word 
or illusive inspirations, order or confusion: that was the ques 
tion. Luther was in the highest and best mood, full of faith 
in his cause, and also full of charity for his opponents, strong 
in matter, sweet in manner, and completely successful. He 
never showed such moderation and forbearance before or 

lie preached eight sermons for eight days in succession, 
and carried the audience with him. They are models of 
effective popular eloquence, and among the best he ever 
preached. He handled the subject from the stand-point of a 
pastor, with line tact and practical wisdom. He kept aloof 
from coarse personalities which disfigure so many of his 
polemical writings. Not one unkind word, not one unpleasant 
allusion, escaped his lips. In plain, clear, strong, scriptural 
language, lie refuted the errors without naming the errorists. 
The positive statement of the truth in love is the best refuta 
tion of error. 1 

The ruling ideas of these eight discourses are : Christian 
freedom and Christian charity; freedom from the tyranny of 
radicalism which would force the conscience against forms, 
as the tyranny of popery forces the conscience in the oppo 
site direction ; charity towards the weak, who must be trained 
like children, and tenderly dealt with, lest they stumble and 
fall. Faith is worthless without charity. No man has a 
right to compel his brother in matters that are left free ; and 
among these are marriage, living in convents, private con 
fession, fasting and eating, images in churches. Abuses 
which contradict the word of God, as private masses, should 
be abolished, but in an orderly manner and by proper author 
ity. The Word of God and moral suasion must be allowed 
to do the work. Paul preached against the idols in Athens, 

1 The u^7jOfiifa> iv dj-urry, Eph. 4: 15. 


without (duelling one of them; and yet they fell in conse 
quence of liis preaching. 

" tiu nun i utiinmnruiii" said Luther, " I will preach, speak, 
write, hut 1 will force no one; f<r faith must he voluntary. 
Take me as an example. I stood up against the Pope, indul 
gences, and all papists, hut without violence or uproar. I 
only urged, preached, and declared God s Word, nothing 
else. And yet while I was asleep, or drinking Wittenberg 
beer with my Philip Melanehthon and Amsdorf, the Word 
inflicted greater injury on popery than prince or emperor 
ever did. I did nothing, the Word did every thing. Had I 
appealed to force, all Germany might have been deluged with 
blood : yea, I might have kindled a conflict at Worms, so that 
the Kmperor would not have been safe. But what would 
have been the result? Kuin and desolation of body and soul. 
I therefore kept quiet, and gave the Word free course through 
the world. Do you know what the Devil thinks when he 
sees men use violence to propagate the gospel? lie sits with 
folded arms behind the lire of hell, and says with malignant 
looks and frightful grin: k Ah, how wise these madmen are 
to play my game! Let them go on ; I shall reap the benefit. 
I delight in it." But when he sees the Word running and 
contending alone on the battle-field, then he shudders and 
shakes for fear. The Word is almighty, and takes captive 
the hearts." 

Eloquence rarely achieved a more complete and honorable 
triumph. It was not the eloquence of passion and violence, 
but the eloquence of wisdom and love. It is easier to rouse 
the wild beast in man, than to tame it into submission. AJe- 
lanchthon and the professors, the magistrate and peaceful citi 
zens, were delighted. Dr. Scliurf wrote to the Kleetor, after 

1 Krl. (!.. XXVIII. 210 and Jf,o (second sermon). Th<> .-illusion to tli- 
drinking <>t" " \\"<tt< nb< ryixrl, /;/,</ ,// m incin I hiUpiio uml Amwlort " 
(p. li( ><) is omittr.1 in tin- shoriiT edition, which has instead: " tccnn ich hin 
yutcr Diii j - ;/ tt " (p. lil J). 


the sixth discourse: "Oh, what joy has Dr. Martin s return 
spread among 1 us ! His words, through divine mercy, are 
bringing back every day misguided people into the way of 
the truth. It is as clear as the sun, that the Spirit of God is 
in him, and that he returned to Wittenberg by His special 

Most of the old forms were restored again, at least for a 
season, till the people were ripe for the changes. Luther 
himself returned to the convent, observed the fasts, and 
resumed the cowl, but laid it aside two years afterwards 
when the Elector sent him a new suit. The passage in the 
mass, however, which referred to the unblood} repetition of 
the sacrifice and the miraculous transformation of the ele 
ments, was not restored, and the communion in both kinds 
prevailed, and soon became the universal custom. The Elec 
tor himself, shortly before his death (May 5, 15:25_), com 
muned with the cup. 

Didymus openly acknowledged his error, and declared that 
Luther preached like an angel. 1 I>ut the Zwickau Prophets 
left Wittenberg for ever, and abused the Reformer as a new 
pope and enemy of spiritual religion. Miinzer stirred up the 
Peasants War, and met a tragic fate. 2 

Carlstadt submitted silently, but sullenly. lie was a dis 
appointed and unhappy man, and harbored feelings of revenge 
against Luther. Kanke characterizes him as " one of those 
men, not rare among Germans, who with an inborn tendency 
to profundity unite the courage of rejecting all that is estab 
lished, and defending all that others reject, without ever rising 
to a clear view and solid conviction/ lie resumed his lec 
tures in the university for a time ; but in 1528 he retired to a 

1 Luthor speaks favorably of him. and recommended him to a pastoral 
charge at Altrnhurg. iSer his It-tiers in I)e Write, II. 170, is 1 ,, 1^4. 

- He published at Niirnherir, 1524, a srlf-(lrt rn,> " Il /Wrr Jax (/cixtlnse 
mti,ftl( fn-inli- Ficixch zn in//n//,r,v// ;in ,l called Lutheran " Arch-heathen," 
"Arch-scamp," "Wittenberg Pope," " Babylonian Woman," "Dragon," 
" Basilisk," etc. 


farm in the neighborhood, to live as u neighbor Andrew " with 
lowly peasants, without, however, resigning the emoluments 
of his professorship. He devoted himself more fully than 
ever to his mystical speculations and imaginary inspirations. 
lie entered into secret correspondence with Miin/er, though 
lie never fully approved his political movements. He pub 
lished at Jena, where he established a printing-press, a num 
ber of devotional books under the name of " a new layman/ 
instead of Doctor of Theology. He indueed the congrega 
tion of Orlumiimle to elect him their pastor without author 
ity from the academic Senate of Wittenberg which had the 
right of appointment, and introduced there his innovations 
in worship, storming the altars and images. In loiM he 
openly came out with his novel theory of the Lord s Supper 
in opposition to Luther, and thus kindled the unfortunate 
encharistie controversy which so seriously interfered with the 
peace and harmony of the IJelormers. lie also sympathized 
with the Anabaptists. 1 Luther after long forbearance gave 
him up as incorrigible. 2 With his consent, Carlstadt was 
exiled from Saxony (l">-4), but allowed to return on a sort 
of revocation, and on condition of keeping silence (lf)iio). 
lie evaded another expulsion by flight (loi^S). 1 Ic wandered 
about in Germany in great poverty, made common cause 
with the Zwinglians, gave up some of his extravagant notions, 
sobered down, and found a resting-place first as pastor in 
Zurich, and then as professor of theology in Basel (1534 
lo-ll), where during the raging of a pestilence he finished 
his erratic career. 

1 Nevertheless, in \W> ho invited Luther and his wife, Melanehthon Mini 
Jonas, as sponsors at the baptism of a n<-\v-born son in the villain- of .snjrrn 
near Wittenberg. lie lived after his return from exile in \vry humble cir- 
cuinstan<-< s ban ly making a living from the sale of rakes and b--r. 

a His writings against < arista. It, in Waleh, X., XV., ami XX., and in Krl. 
od., LXIV. O.H4-40S. His bock \\ i<l<r <//< l.innnli* /,,,, / /<,/-//./, n (l. .L*:,) 
Is chiefly diivrtt-d against Carlslailt. In tin- Table Talk (Krl. c*!., LX1. HI) 
he calls Carlstadt and Miin/er incarnate devils. 

392 THE GERMAN JlEFOUMATK )N. A.I). 1517 TO 1500. 

GO. The Diets of Nimiberg, A.I). W22-l,j24. Adrian VI. 

I. WALCH, XV. 2.104 &<i<\. KAXKK, vol. II. pp. 27-40, 70-lnn, i>44-202. 

.1. JAXSSKX, vol. II. 2o(> sqq., ;)15 sqq. KOSTLIX, I. 022 sqq. 

II. On Adrian VI. GACIIAUD : Com-xpondanci . dc Chark-x (Juinl. ct >T Adrian 

VI. Brux., 18-VJ. MOKIXG: Vita Adriani T/., l.">:5tj. JJriiMAXx: 
Iladriann* VI. , she An(dccta Ilixtorica dc Ilndr. VI. Truji-cti 1727 
(includes Moring). KANKK: D <e roni. Piqi^e in den l<t;.fen vier 
Jnrhh.. I., ,M>4 (Sth e.l. 1885). C. H(">FLEK (Kom. Cath.): \Vnhl wid 
Thronbesteiyuny dts Ictzfcn dcutsclicn Pupxlex, Adrian \ I. Wien, 
1872; an. I J)>-r dvutsclic Kaixer und dcr Ic/zl* dcutffcfic Pafixt, Carl V. 
und Adrian VI. Wien, 1870. F;i. XIPPOLD: Di> Refonnbcstrebunyen 
Papxt Hadrian VI., und die Ursavhcn i/ircx Scliciternn. Leipzig, 
1875. II. UAL T ?:I: : Hadrian VI. Hoitlflb., 1S7<5. MAriiKXiJUKCiiEii: 
Gwh. dcr kathol. W-f urination, I. 202-22"). Nordlingen, 1880. bee also 
the Lit. on Charles V., 00 (p. 202 sqq.), 

We must now turn our attention to the political situation, 
and the attitude of the German Diet to the church question. 

The growing sympathies of the German nation with the 
Reformation and the political troubles made the execution 
of the papal bull and the Edict of Worms against Luther 
more and more impossible. The Emperor was absent in 
Spain, and fully occupied with the suppression of an insur 
rection, the conquest of Mexico by Cortez, and the war with 
France. Germany was threatened by the approach of the 
Turks, who had conquered Belgrad and the greater part of 
Hungary. The dangers of the nation were overruled for 
the progress of Protestantism. 

An important change took place in the papacy. Leo X. 
died Dec. 1, 1521; and Adrian VI. (1459-152:]) w;l s un 
expectedly elected in his absence, perhaps by the indirect 
influence of the Emperor, his former pupil. The cardinals 
hardly knew what they did, and hoped he might decline. 

Adrian formed, by his moral earnestness and monastic 
piety, a striking contrast to the frivolity and worldliness of 
his predecessors. lie was a Dutchman, born at Utrecht, a 
learned professor of theology in Louvain, then administrator 

CO. TIII-: IHKTS OF Ni ; i:NUi:i:<;, A.D. 1 ")i!J-l")24. 3 ( ,-3 

and inquisitor of Spain, and a man of unblemished char 
acter. 1 He had openly denied the papal infallibility; but 
otherwise he was an orthodox Dominican, and opposed 
to a doctrinal reformation. He had combined with the 
Louvain professors in the condemnation of Luther, and 
advised Charles to take rigorous measures against him at 
Worms. Ban-footed and without any ostentation, he entered 
Rome. lie read daily mass at early dawn, took a simple 
meal, slept on a couch, and lived like a monk. He intro 
duced strict economy in the jKipal household, and vigorously 
attacked the grossest abuses. He tried to gain the influence 
of Erasmus and Zwingli. But he encountered opposition 

Under these circumstances the Diet met at Niirnberg, 
March - ; , l-~>:2:2, ami again Nov. IT, under the presidency of 
Ferdinand, the brother of the Emperor. To avert the danger 
of the Turks, processions and public prayers were ordered, 
and a tax imposed; but no army was raised. 

Adrian demanded the execution of the Edict of Worms, 
and compared Luther to Mohammed; but he broke the force 
of his request by confessing with surprising frankness the 
Corruptions of the Roman court, which loudly called for a 
radical moral reform of the head and members. Never 
before had the Curia made such a confession. 

" \Ve know," wrote the Pope in the instruction to his 
legate, Francesco Chierecjati, "that for some time manv 
abominations, abuses in ecclesiastical affairs, and violations of 
rights have taken place in the holv see; and that all things 
have been perverted into bad. From the head the corrup- 

1 IJankc ( I iij>*fi , I. (Ml): " A Irinn irnrron ijnrrfnitts iinhem ftoltfnnn / "/: 
rtrlitncft(iJTen, I mmm. tli<ili<i ; xetn crnntfiuft, until xah ilm nie iin<l* rx nix leixr 
tnit den J/i)>i n Itf/nln; u >er mil wnlilimlleinler^ reiner A^sif/itin : ein 
\rnhrer (iiisl //>//*;. II >/// <-in dei/enxntz, <tlx IT nun <!<>rf einzoi/, fo Leo 
to jrrticliti i un<l rerxcfncemlcrixrh Hof yrhnlten ! En e.rixtirt ein Jlrief mn 
ihnt. In irrlrln-in er mt if : ir ini t -lilf lii ier in xelner I m/i.vtei zu Li tH dl Uott 
difnen nls r<ii<t win." I allavicino calls him " vccU sinstico ultimo, ponti- 
Jice mediocre." 

394 THI-: C;KI:MAN REFORMATION. A.D. 1517 TO 1530. 

tion has passed to the limbs, from the Pope to the prelates: 
we have all departed ; there is none that doeth good, no, 
not one/ He regarded Protestantism as a just punishment 
for the sins of the prelates. lie promised to do all in his 
power to remedy the evil, and to begin with the Curia 
whence it arose. 1 

The Emperor was likewise in favor of a reform of discipline, 
though displeased with Adrian for not supporting him in his 
war with France and his church-spoliation schemes. 

The attempt to reform the church morally without touch 
ing the dogma had been made by the great councils of the 
fifteenth century, and failed. Adrian found no sympathy in 
Home, and reigned too short a time (Jan. 9, 1522 to Sept. 
14, 1523) to accomplish his desire. It was rumored that he 
died of poison ; but the proof is wanting. Home rejoiced. 
Ilis successor, Clement VII. (1523-1534), adopted at once 
the policy of his cousin, Leo X. 

Complaint was made in the Diet against the Elector 
Frederick, that he tolerated Luther at Wittenberg, and 
allowed the double communion, the marriage of priests, and 
the forsaking of convents, but his controlling influence pre 
vented any unfavorable action. The report of the suppres 
sion of the radical movements in Wittenberg made a good 
impression. Lutheran books were freely printed and sold 
in Xiirnberg. Osiander preached openly against the Homan 

The Diet, in the answer to the Pope (framed Feb. 8 and 
published as an edict March 6, 1523), refused to execute 
the Edict of Worms, and demanded the calling of a free 
general council in Germany within a year. In the mean 
time, Luther should keep silence ; and the preachers should 

* " Ut pr un 11 m nit in JK^C, i(n<1c forte omnft Jtoc wnlnin proressit, 
tur." .See the instruction in Uaynaldus, ml ann. 1;V2 J, Tom. XI. :5<>:J. Luther 
published it with sarcastic comments. Pallavicino charges Adrian with exag 
geration and want of prudence, which he thought was often more important 
for the public good than personal holiness." See Hergeurotlier, III. 43. 

00. Tin: DIETS OF Ni KNni:u<;, A.I). Io22-l~>24. 30o 

content themselves with preaching the holy gospel according 

to the approved writings of the Christian church. At the 
same time the hundred gravamina of the German nation 
were repeated. 

This edict was a compromise, and did not decide the 
church (question; hut it averted the immediate danger to 
the Reformation, and so far marks a favorable change, as 
compared with the Edict of Worms. It was the beginning 
of the political emancipation of Germany from the control of 
the papacy. Luther was rather pleased with it, except the 
prohibition of preaching and writing, which he did not obey. 

The influence of the edict, however, was weakened by 
several events which occurred soon afterwards. 

At a ne\v Diet at Niirnherg in January, 1~>24. whore the 
shrewd Pope Clement VII. was represented by Cardinal 
Campeggio, the resolution was passed to execute the Edict 
of Worms, though with the elastic clause, "as far as 

At tin? earnest solicitation of the papal nuncio, the .Arch 
duke Ferdinand of .Austria, and the Dukes William and 
Louis of Bavaria, together with twelve bishops of South 
(iermanv, concluded at Rutisboii, Julv 0, lf)24, a league for 
the protection of the Roman faith against the Reformation, 
with the exception of the abolition of some glaring abuses 
which did not touch doctrines. 1 The Emperor lent it his 
inlluence by issuing a stringent edict (July 27, 1">24). This 
was an ominous event. The Romish league called forth a 
Protestant counter-league of Philip of Hesse and John of 
Saxony, at Torgau in June, 1520, although against the advice 
of the Wittenberg Reformers, who feared more evil than 
good from a union of politics with religion and trusted to 
the power of the Word of (rod without anv carnal weapons. 

Thus the German nation was divided into two hostile 
camps. From this unhappy division arose the political weak- 
1 Siv details in Itunkf, II., U)S .sijj. :iml in J:inss<>n, II., :>:>(> s<jq. 


ness of the empire, and the terrible calamities of the Smal- 
ktildiiin and the Thirty Years Wars. In 15:25 the Peasants 
War broke out, and gave new strength to the reaction, but 
only for a short time. 

70. Luther and Henry VIII. 

HENRICUS VIII.: Atlscrtio VII. Sacram. mh. Lutli. Lend. 1521. A Ger 
man translation by Frick, 1522, in Walch, XIX., 15S sqq. LUTHKHUS: 
Contra Hcnrlc.nni lieyein. 1022. Also freely reproduced in German by 
Luther. His letter to Henry, Sept. 1, 1025. Auf tZe.s Kon njs in Eng 
land Liixterxchrift M. Luther s Antu-ort. 1527. Afterwards also in 
Latin. See the documents in WALCH, XIX. 15:3-521; Erl. ed., XXVIII. 
34- ] sqq. ; XXX. 1-14. Comp. also Luther s letters of Feb. 4 and March 
11, 1547, in DE WETTE, III. 101 and 10:3. 

With all his opposition to Ultra-Protestantism in church 
and state, Luther did not mean to yield an inch to the 
Romanists. This appears from two very personal contro 
versies which took place during these disturbances, the 
one with Henry VIII. concerning the sacraments; the other 
with Erasmus about predestination and free-will. In both 
he forgot the admirable lessons of moderation which he had 
enjoined from the pulpit in Wittenberg. He used again the 
club of Hercules. 

Henry VIII. of England urged Charles V. to exterminate 
the Lutheran heresy by force, and wrote in 1521 (probably 
with the assistance of his chaplain, Edward Lee), a scholastic 
defence of the seven sacraments, against Luther s "Babylon 
ish Captivity." He dedicated the book to Pope Leo X. He 
treated the Reformer with the utmost contempt, as a blas 
phemer and servant of Satan. He used the old weapons of 
church authority against freedom. He adhered to the dogma 
of transubstantiation, even after his breach with Rome. Pope 
Clement VII. judged that this book was written with the aid 
of the Holy Spirit, and promised indulgence to all who read 
it. At the same time he gratified the ambition of the vain 


king l>y confirming the title "Defender of the Faith," which 
Leo had already conferred upon him. 1 

The Protestant successors of Henry have retained the title 
to this day, though with a very different view of its meaning. 
The British sovereigns are defenders of the Episcopal Church 
in Kngland, and of the Presbyterian Church in Scotland, and 
in both characters enemies of the Church of Rome. 

Luther read the King a lecture (in Latin and (ierman) such 
as was rarelv read to any crowned head. He called him 
" King Henry, of (rod s dix /race (or wrath}, King of England," 
and heaped upon him the most abusive epithets. 2 lie inci 
dentally hit other princes, saying that "King Henry helps to 
prove the proverb that there are no greater fools than kings 
and princes/ Such a style of polemics can not be justified 
by the coarseness of the age, or the nature of the provoca 
tion, and did more harm to Luther than to Henry. His best 
friends regretted it: yet long afterwards he even surpassed 
the violence, if possible, in his savage and scurrilous attack 
upon Duke Henry of Brunswick. 3 

Wlini there was a prospect of gaining Henry VIII. for the 
cause of the Reformation. Luther made the matter worse by 
a strange inconsistency. In a most humble letter of Sept. 1, 
l~> 2~>, he retracted ( not his doctrine, but) all the personal 

1 I allavirino and I Ferment-other (I IT. 41) show that Leo conferred the 
title in a Imli of Oct. II, l. c l, ami that Clement continued it in a hull of 
Marel. :,. l.Vj: ,. 

- KsjM nally it) tin 1 ("Jerinan edition of his reply, where Henry is styled not 
only :i . / krnuti-r /v / (crowned donkey ) ami flrmh-i- \nrr !uii>fi-.i!.li- foul), 
but even a n-rrurhlcr Xchnrki; itnr<rxi-//<nntt r Lii;/n<i\ (intti .v/u.s/ /-. /, etc. 
"I ->.!> it h.-fiirc all tin- world, that tin- Kini: of I-Ji^land is a liar and no 
KMitlMii:ui (fin I lihii-ih-nnnnn)" II. -makes fun of his title " I VtVnd.-r ..f 
Faith." The |ia]iists who deny Christ may need sudi a defender; hut "the 
true ehiireh disdains a human patron, and sinjjs, l)<nninnx milii ndjittur 
IPs. H: Hi), and Nnlit?. <-,,,<_ t!<l,,-> hi /*r/<M-;/./ M.s (IN. 1ls:S. .)." In eon- 
chision he apologizes for his violenei-. |MMMHM he liad to deal with "itiim-- 
nunfli ii-n vil lfii Cn / tt ,,, ,-n." ( ard. I lei-^-nrot li.-r ( A ",,- -In n-ji -s,-1 t . III. 41, 
JJd, 1MMH) says: " Lull,*,- ,iiil>"n,-l> ( in / ,- <j>-iin intvn mul l>un/i<tjttsttn 
//> Crnlihtit Z"r t liixxiriltit nm<l>il l n l." 1 

Wnli-r IhtHHWiti-xt, l.Vll. 


abuse, asked his pardon, and offered to honor his name pub 
licly. Henry in his reply refused the offer with royal pride 
and scorn, and said that he now despised him as heartily 
for his cowardice as he had formerly hated him for his heresy. 
He also charged him with violating a nun consecrated to God, 
and leading other monks into a breach of their vows and into 
eternal perdition. Emser published a German translation of 
Luther s letter and the King s answer (which was transmitted 
through Duke George of Saxony), and accompanied it with 
new vituperations and slanders (1527). All the Romanists 
regarded this controversy, and the similar correspondence 
with Duke George, as a great blow to the Reformation. 

Luther now resumed his former sarcastic tone ; but it was 
a painful effort, and did not improve the case. He suspected 
that the answer was written by Erasmus, who had "more 
skill and sense in his linger than the King with all liis 
wiseacres." He emphatically denied that he had offered to 
retract any of his doctrines. "I say, Xo, no, no, as long as 
I breathe, no matter how it offend king, emperor, prince, or 
devil. ... In short, my doctrine is the main thing of which 
I boast, not only against princes and kings, but also against 
all devils. The other thing, my life and person, I know 
well enough to be sinful, and nothing to boast of; I am a 
poor sinner, and let all my enemies be saints or angels. I 
am both proud and humble as St. Paul (Phil. 2:3)." 

In December of the same year in which lie wrote his first 
book against King Henry, Luther began his important treat 
ise u On the Secular Power, and how far obedience is due to 
it. He defends here the divine right and authority of the 
secular magistrate, and the duty of passive obedience, on 
the ground of Matt. 5:30 and Rom. 13:1, but only in 
temporal affairs. While he forbade the use of carnal force, 
he never shrank from telling even his own prince the truth 
in the plainest manner. He exercised the freedom of speech 
and of the press to the fullest extent, both in favor of the 

71. ERASMUS. 300 

Reformation and against political revolution. The Reforma 
tion elevated the state at the expense of the freedom of the 
church; while Romanism lowered the dignity of the state to 
the position of an obedient servant of the hierarchy. 

One wrong does not justify another. Yet those Roman- 
Catholic historians who make capital of this humiliating 
conduct of the Reformer, against his cause, should remember 
that Cardinal Pole, whom they magnify as one of the greatest 
and purest men of that age, in his book on the I nitv of the 
Church, abused King Henry as violently and more keenly, 
although he was his king and benefactor, and had not given 
him anv personal provocation ; while Luther wrote in self- 
defense onlv, and was with all his passionate temper a man 
of kind and generous feelings. 

Melanchthon regretted the fierce attack on King Henry; 
and when the king began to favor the Reformation, he dedi 
cated to him the revised edition of his theological Loci ^looo). 
lie was twice called to England, but declined. 1 

71. Erasmus. 

I. KKA^MUS: Optra nmnia, ed. by n<nfu* lihruimiis. Basil. 1. "40-41: S vols. 

fol.; h.-st >il. by ( li;-i, u* (Le rierk), LugM. J5at. 17<;;-u<; ; in toin. in 11 
vols. fol. Then- arc several English translations of bis Knchir!<l!<iu, 
Kncdiniiint, A l t ji", ( nllo(jii!(t, and smaller tracts. His most important 
theological works are bis editions of the Greek Test. (l- .Ki, ID, i i , *^T. 
;).">, exclusive of more than thirty reprints), his Annotations and 
Paraphrases, his Ein h!ri<liini ^fil!tii< Chrixtluni, his editions of Lanr. 
Valla, .Teroini . Auirnstin, Aml)rose, Driven, and other Fathers. His 
jfni- Kt F.n<-iniiiinii. or I liitC ji/rir of Folly (compose. 1 l.">(i ( .l), was often 
edited. His letters are very important for the literary history of his 
ai;-. His most l>ook is his Collo i ilf*, which contain the witti- 
<-st e.\])osnres of the follies and abuses of monkery, fasting, pilgrimages, 
etc. Kn^lish transl. by X. llniln/, I.ond. 17-4: new ed. with noles by 
Itev. /;. .lolmxon. 1S7<, _ vols. After l."*14 all his works were published 
by his friend John Frol.m in Uasi-1. 

1 He wrote in March: " l*<jo jum, aU<-rix lilcris in An<jli<iin cocvr " (Op. 

II. 7US). 



Coin p. ADALIJ. HOIJAWITZ: Erasmus r. Rotterdam iind Hdartinus 
Lii>xinx, Wien, 1882; Erasmiana, several numbers, Wien, 18S-_ -So (re 
printed from the Sitzunysberichte of the Imperial Aca leniy of Vienna; 
contains extracts from the correspondence of Er., discovered in ti Codex 
at Louvain, and in the Codex liehdigeranus, 1^4 of the city library at 


EKASMTS. From the Portrait by A. Diirer. 

Breslau, founded by Rehdiger). UOHAWITX and IIAIITFKLDKU: r,ricj- 

M t ctixcl d* x licalnti Rlicnanus. Leipx/ig, 188(5. 

II. Biographies of Erasmus by himself and by Deatus TJlienanns, in vol. I. 
of the ed. of Clericns; by PIKHUK HAVLI:, in his " Dictionnaire" (l(i .)fi); 
KNHJHT, Cambr. IT JO; JOKTIX, Loud. 174^, L vols. : isos. :\ \-ols. (ehietly 
a sinnmary of the letters of Erasmus with critical comments); I>UI:IOXY, 
Paris, 17.TT, - vols. ; HKNKK, Halle, 17*:. , 1 vols.: HKSS. Xiirich, 1780, 
2 vols. ; Hri LEK, London, 1325; AD. MULLKR, Hamburg, 1828 (Le.ben 

71. KKASMCS. 401 

<les E. r. Rf)ttf>r<lnm . . . Eine (jfkrnnti r,-<isxchrift ; romp, the excel 
lent review of UI.I.MAXX in tin- "Studien iiiul Kritikcn," ISL><), No. [.)-, 
GJ.ASIUS (pri/.c essay in Dutch), The Hairue, is:>(); STICIIAKT (AY. r. 
Unfit r<l., m-iiic St<llnn<j znr Kir<-h< uml :;n din kii dil. licweyiint/cn 
sdiiir fait), Leipz. 1<70; DUKAXP IK I. ATI: (Ernsme, in ccurm-nr it 
initinti nr d> t cf/irit mo lcnn). Pur. 1*7-!, li vols. : K. IJ. I)KI:MM<>NI> 
(Ernmntttt, tiin Life mid (. Itnntcter}, Load. 1^7-"., Jvols. ; ( ,. Fi:r(.i :iu: 
(llr., i-tii lf mir *<i i- ir et w.s onrnujcx). Pur. lsT4; Pi-:XMN(iToN, Loiul. 
1 S T">; Mil. MAX (in Sticonaroln, Enimnim, itntlvt/ier Exstiys), Loud. 1 S T (| : 
SKEHOII.M (in 77/e Oxford /iV/ onw/-*), Loud., -_M <(!. l^O .t. Also. WUKLK: 
De EriDsnii liotteroddinistndiin irenirln, Pudcrliorn, 18T-. AV. \ I>CMKK: 
Ei iittiitiiiii i. I l i^iriiinni znr Il<rti>r<i!sfci<r <l< r 1 nin-rn. Hos l. liziscl, 
187(5. " Krusnius in Krsdi and (irnli--r, \o\. XXXVI. (hy EKIIAKD): 
in th.- -All-. DeuiM-ln Hio^r." VI. KJO-lH) (l.y KA.MMKI.); in Heiv.oi, . 1 
IV. 114-lJl i ny IlAi.Kxn.\cn). and in H.T/O-- IV. 27S-2!M (l.y K. 
STAIIKI.IN); in the " Kncycl. Hrit.," ( .i:h ed., VIII. :> 1^-518. Coinp. 
Lit. in 7J. 

The quarrel between King Henry and Luther was tlie 
occasion <>t a tar more serious controversy and ojien breach 
between Erasmus and the Reformation. This involved a 
separation of humanism from 1 rotestantism. 

TJic Position of Erasmus. 

Pesiderius Erasmus of Rotterdam 1 (14 ,iUl;";30) was the 
king among scholars in the early part of the sixteenth cen 
tury, lie combined native genius, classical and biblical learn 
ing, livelv imagination, keen wit, and refined taste. He was 
the most cultivated man of his age, and the admired center 
of scholastic Europe from Germany to Italy and Spain, from 

1 Hi* doulilf name is a Latin and (I reek translation of his father s Chris- 
tiin name <;>>-<ir l (/, oy /), or (ii-rfun- l - d< rnltt,,,- or IA< ,//^v, i.e., /;- 
lotfl, in nit-diievul Latin Ih-niil<-riux, in (Jreek Kntximix, or rut her Ertt^inhm 
from E(n iniun, , Ln,-cl>/. H- found out the mistake when he became famil 
iar with (MV.-K-, ami ueeonliimly ^ave his godson, the son of his publisher 
FrolM-n. the irimr John Entmninx (Erdxiiiiolus). In di-di.-at inn to him an 
Improved edition of bis Ctflhxjnii-x ( 1 .Y_M>. In- calls this book " ffxt^utoi . the 
delight of the Muses who foster sacred things. lie was eijually unfortunate 
In the additional epithet llntemdmiHi*, instead of linttrodninenxlx. lint he 
was innocent of both mistakes. 


England to Hungary. The visible unity of the Catholic 
Church, and the easy interchange of ideas through the 
medium of one learned language, explain in purl his unique 
position. No man before or since acquired such undisputed 
sovereignty in the republic of letters. No such sovereignty 
is possible nowadays when distinguished scholars are far 
more numerous, and when the Church is divided into hostile 
camps. 1 

Erasmus shines in the front rank of the humanists and 
forerunners of the Reformation, on the dividing line between 
the middle ages and modern times. His great mission was 
to revive the spirit of classical and Christian antiquity, and 
to make it a reforming power within the church. He cleared 
the way for a work of construction which required stronger 
hands than his. He had no creative and no organizing 
power. The first period of his life till 1524 was progressive 
and reformatory ; the second, till his death, 1530, was con 
servative and reactionary. 

He did more than any of his contemporaries to prepare the 
church for the Reformation by the impulse he gave to classical, 
biblical, and patristic studies, and by his satirical exposures 
of ecclesiastical abuses and monastic ignorance and bigotry. 
But he stopped half way, and after a period of hesitation he 
openly declared war against Luther, thereby injuring both 
his own reputation and the progress of the movement among 
scholars. lie was a reformer against reform, and in league 
with Rome. Thus he lost the respect and confidence of both 
parties. It would have been belter for his fame if he had 
died in 151*), just after issuing the Greek Testament, a year 
before the Reformation. To do justice to him, we must look 
backward. Men of transition, like Slaupitz, Reuchlin, and 
Erasmus, are no less necessary than bold leaders of a new 

1 Drummond (IT. 0:V7) calls Erasmus "the greatest luminary of his age, 
the greatest scholar of any age." But his learning embraced only the litera 
ture in the Greek and Latin languages. 

71. KKASMT S. -JUo 

departure. They belong to tin 4 class of which John tlir Hap- 
ti*t is the highest type. Protestants should never forget the 
immense debt of gratitude which they owe to the lirst editor 
of the Greek Testament who enabled Luther and Tvndale to 
make their translations of the word of life from the original. 
and to lead men to the verv fountain of all that is most valu 
able and permanent in the Reformation. His edition was 
hastily prepared, before the art of textual criticism was born ; 
but it anticipated the publication of the ponderous Complu- 
tensian Polyglot, and became the basis of the popularly 
received text. His exegetical opinions still receive 1 and 
deserve the attention of commentators. To him we owe 
also the lirst scholarly editions of the Fathers, especially of 
Jerome, with whom he was most in sympathy. From these 
editions the Reformers drew their weapons of patristic con 
troversy with the Romanists, who always appealed to the 
fathers of the Nicene age rather than to the grandfathers of 
the apostolic age 1 . 

Erasmus was allied to Reiichlin and Ulrich von I hit ten, 
but greater and far more influential than both. All hated 
monasticism and obscurantism. Reuchlin revived Hebrew, 
Erasmus (Jreek learning, so necessary for the cultivation of 
biblical studius. Reuchlin gave his nephew Melanchthon to 
Wittenberg, but died a good Catholic. Ilutten became a 
radical ultra-reformer, fell out with Erasmus, who disowned 
him when he was most in need of a friend, and perished in 
disgrace. Erasmus survived both, to protest against Protest 

And yet he cannot be charged wilh apostasy or even with 
inconsistency. lie never was a Protestant, and never meant to 
be one. Division and separation did not enter into his pro 
gram. From beginning to end he labored for a reforma 
tion within the church and within the papacy, not without 
it. Hut the new wine burst the old bottles. The reform 
which he set in motion went beyond him, and left him 


behind. In some of his opinions, however, lie was ahead of 
his age, and anticipated a more modern stage of Protestant 
ism. He was as much a forerunner of Rationalism as of the 

Sketch of Ills Life. 

Erasmus was the illegitimate son of a Dutch priest, Gerard, 
and Margaret, the daughter of a physician, their last but not 
their only child. 1 lie was born in Rotterdam, Oct. 27, in the 
year 1406 or 1467. 2 He received his early education in the 
cathedral school of Utrecht and in a flourishing classical 
academy at Deventer, where he began to show his brilliant 
talents, especially a most tenacious memory. Books were his 
chief delight. Already in his twelfth year he knew Horace 
and Terence by heart. 

After the death of his mother, he was robbed of his inherit 
ance by his guardians, and put against his will into a convent 
at Herzogenbusch, which he exchanged afterwards for one at 
Steyn (Emaus), near Gouda, a few miles from Rotterdam. 

He spent five unhappy years in monastic seclusion (1486- 
1491), and conceived an utter disgust for monkery. Ulrica 
von Ilutten passed through the same experience, with the 
same negative result ; while for Luther monastic life was his 
free choice, and became the cradle of a new religious life. 
Erasmus found relief in the stud}* of the classics, which he 
pursued without a guide, by a secret impulse of nature. We 
have from this period a number of his compositions in poetry 

1 His father was ordained a priest after the birth of Erasmus; for he says 
that lie lived with Margaret " Sj>c conjn .j!!," 1 and became a priest in Home oil 
learning from his parents, who were opposed to the marriage, the false report 
that his beloved Margaret was dead. 

- He says in his autobiographical sketch: " Natus Roteroilmni r!f/IUa 
Simon!.* fj J/nlir circa <tun/nn 67, xnpra millesiinum quadrinyentestniutii." 
II is friend and biographer. Beat us Khenanus, did not know the year of his 
birth. His epitaph in Basel gives 14( .(5; the inscription on his statue at Rot 
terdam gives UI M; the historians vary from 14(!4 to 14i;t). Bayle, Buriguy, 
Midler, and Drunnnond (I. o sq.) discuss the chronology. 

71. KIIASMTS. 40") 

and prose, odes to Christ and the holy Virgin, invectives 
against despiscrs of eloquence, and an cssav <>n the contempt 
of the world, in which lie describes the corruptions of the 
world and the vices of the monks. 

He was delivered from his prison life in 14!>1 by the bishop 
of Cambray, his parsimonious patron, and ordained to the 
priesthood in 1 W 2. He continued in the clerical profession, 
and remained unmarried, but never had a parish. 

He now gave himself up entirely to study in the l/nivei sity 
of Paris and at Orleans. His favorite authors were Cicero, 
Terence, Plutarch, and Lncian among the classics, Jerome 
among the fathers, and Laurentius Valla the commentator. 
He led hereafter an independent literary life without a reg 
ular charge, supporting himself by teaching, and then sup 
ported by rich friends. 1 In his davs of povertv he solicited 
aid in letters of mingled humility and vanity; when he 
became famous, he received liberal gifts and pensions from 
prelates and princes, and left at his death seven thousand 
ducats. Tin; title of royal counsellor of the King of Spain 
(Charles V.) brought him an annual income of four hundred 
guilders after 1.~>1<!. The smaller pensions were paid irreg 
ularly, ai*l sometimes failed in that impecunious age. Au 
thors seldom received copy monev or royalty from publishers 
and printers, but voluntary donations from patrons of learn 
ing and persons to whom thev dedicated their works. Froben, 
however, his chief publisher, treated Erasmus verv gener- 
onslv. He traveled extensively, like St. Jerome, and made 
the personal acquaintance of the chief celebrities in church 
and state. 

He paid two important visits to England, first on the invi 
tation of his grateful and generous pupil. Lord Mont joy. be 
tween 1408 and 1~><M), and again in 1 ">!<). There he became 
intimate with the like-minded Sir Thomas More, Dean Colct, 

1 !! c:ills himself, in his autobiographical .sketch, di jnitatuin ac <lici- 
t uiruiu ]>vr])i (UUH u 


Archbishop Warham, Cardinal Wolsey, Bishop Fisher, and 
was introduced to King Henry VII. and to Prince Henry, 
afterwards Henry VIII. Colet taught him that theology 
must return from scholasticism to the Scriptures, and from 
dry dogmas to practical wisdom. 1 For tins purpose lie 
devoted more attention to Greek at Oxford, but never 
attained to the same proficiency in it as in Latin. On his 
second visit he was appointed Lady Margaret s professor of 
divinity, and reader of Greek, in Cambridge. His room in 
Queen s College is still shown. The number of his hearers 
was small, and so was his income. " Still," he wrote to a 
friend in London, " I am doing my best to promote sound 
scholarship." He had much to say in praise of England, 
where he received so much kindness, but also in complaint 
of bad beer and bad wine, and of his robbery at Dover, 
where he was relieved of all his money in the custom-house, 
under a law that no one should take more than a small sum 
>ut of the realm. 

Between his visits to England he spent three years in Italy 
(1500-1509), and bathed in the fountain of the renaissance. 
He took the degree of doctor of divinity at Turin, and 
remained some time in Venice, Padua, Bologna, and Home. 
He edited the classics of Greece and Rome, with specimens 
of translations, and superintended the press of Manutius 
Aldus at Venice. He entered into the genius of antiquity, 
and felt at home there. He calls Venice the most magnifi 
cent city of the world. But the lovely scenery of Italy, and 
the majestic grandeur of the Alps, seem to have made no 
more impression upon his mind than upon that of Luther; 
at least, he does not speak of it. 

After he returned from his last visit to England, he spent 
his time alternately at Brussels, Antwerp, and Louvain 
(1515-1521). He often visited Basel, and made this ancient 

1 .7. II. Lupton: A Life of John Colet, D.D., Dean of St. FauVs and 
Founder of St. 1 auUs School. London, 1887. 

71. ERASMUS. 407 

city of republican Switzerland, on the boundaries between 
France and Germany, his permanent home in 1 )-!. There 
he lived several years as editor and adviser of his friend and 
publisher, John Froben, who raised his press to the first rank 
in Europe. Ilasel was neutral till 1 .">- .>, when the Reforma 
tion was introduced. It suited his position and taste. lie 
liked the climate and the society. The bishop of I>asel and 
the magistrate treated him with the greatest consideration. 
The university was then in its glory. He was not one of 
the public teachers, but enjoyed the intercourse of \Vytten- 
baeh, Capito, (Jlarean, Pelliean, Ainerbacli. U I am here," 
lie wrote to a friend, "as in the most agreeable museum of 
many and very eminent scholars. Everybody knows Latin 
and ( i reek, most of them also Hebrew. The one excels in 
history, the other in theology; one is well versed in mathe 
matics, another in antiquities, a third in jurisprudence. You 
know how rarely we meet with such a combination. I at 
least never found it before. Ue>ides these literary advan 
tages, what candor, hospitality, and harmony prevail here 
everywhere! You would swear that all hail but one heart 
and one soul." 

The fame of Erasmus brought on an extensive correspond 
ence. His letters and bonks had the widest circulation. The 
" Praise of Folly" passed through seven editions in a few 
months, and through at least twenty-seven editions during his 
lifetime. Of his "Colloquies, 1 a bookseller in Paris printed 
twenty-four thousand copies. His journeys were triumphal 
processions. Deputations received him in the larger cities 
with addresses of welcome. He was treated like a prince. 
Scholars, bishops, cardinals, kings, and popes paid him hom 
age, sent him presents, or gave him pensions. He was offered 
by the Cardinal of Sion, besides a handsome; board, the lib 
eral sum of live hundred ducats annually, if he would, live 
with him in Koine. He was in high favor with Pope Julius 
II. and Leo X., who patronized liberal learning. The former 

408 THE GERMAN REFORMATION. A.I). 1517 TO 1530. 

released him from his monastic vows; the latter invited him 
to Rome, and would have given him any thing if he had con 
sented to remain. Adrian VI. asked his counsel how to deal 
with the Lutheran heresy (1523). Clement VII., in reply to 
a letter, sent him a present of two hundred florins. Paul 
III. offered him a cardinal s hat to reward him for his attack 
on Luther (1530), but he declined it on account of old age. 

The humanists were loudest in his praise, and almost wor 
shiped him. Eoban Hesse, the prince of Latin poets of the 
time, called him a u divine being," and made a pilgrimage on 
foot from Erfurt to Holland to see him face to face. Justus 
.Jonas did the same. Zwingli visited him in Basel, and be 
fore going to sleep used to read some pages of his writings. 
To receive a letter from him was a good fortune, and to 
have a personal interview with him was an event. A man 
even less vain than Erasmus could not have escaped the 
bad effect of such hero-worship. But it was partly neutral 
ized by the detractions of his enemies, who were numerous 
and unsparing. Among these were Stunica and Caranza of 
Spain, Edward Lee of England, the Prince of Carpi, Cardi 
nal Aleander, the leaders of scholastic divinity of Louvain 
and Paris, and the whole crowd of ignorant monks. 

His later years were disturbed by the death of his dearest 
and kindest friend, John Eroben (1527), to whose memory 
he paid a most noble tribute in one of his letters; and still 
more by the progress of the Reformation in his own neighbor 
hood. The optimism of his youth and manhood gave way to 
a gloomy, discontented pessimism. The Lutheran tragedy, he 
said, gave him more pain than the stone which tortured him. 
"It is part of my unhappy late, that my old age has fallen 
on these evil times when quarrels and riots prevail every 
where." u This new gospel," he writes in another letter, "is 
producing a new set of men so impudent, hypocritical, and 
abusive, such liars and sycophants, who agree neither with 
one another nor with anybody else, so universally offensive 

71. KKASMl S. 409 

ami seditious, such madmen and ranters, and in short so 
utterly distasteful to me that it I knew of any eity in wliich 
I should he free from them, I would remove there at once." 
IIi> letters are full of such useless lamentations. He 
had the mortification to see Protestantism triumph in a tu 
multuous way in Basel, through the labors of GEcolampadius, 
his former friend and associate. It is pleasant, however, and 
creditable to him, that his last interview with the reformer 
was friendly and cordial. The authorities of the city left 
him undisturbed. Hut he reluctantly moved to the Roman 
Catholic city of Freiburg in Baden ( Io2i )), wishing that Basel 
might enjoy every blessing, and never receive a sadder guest 
than he. 1 He bought a house in Freiburg, lived there six 
years, and was treated with every demonstration of respect, 
but did not feel happy, and yielded to the solicitations of the 
Queen Regent of the Netherlands to return to his native 

On his way he stopped in Basel in the house of Jerome 
Froben, August, 153."), and attended to the publication of 
Origen. It was his last work. lie fell sick, and died in his 
seventieth year, July 1-, 153G, of his old enemies, the stone 
and the gout, to which was added dysentery. He retained 
his consciousness and genial humor to the last. When his 
three friends, Amerbach, Froben, and Episcopius. visited him 
on his death-bed, he reminded them of Job s three comforters, 
and playfully asked them about the torn garments, and the 
ashes that should be sprinkled on their heads. He died with 
out a priest or any ceremonial of the Church (in wretched 
monastic Latin: ***/) ///./, *///* ///./, xim* !><nx")* but invok 
ing the mercy of Christ. His words, repeated again and 

1 He dictated these lines to his friend Arnerback on departing: 

* J<int IlnNili ti pule . ([mi iinn ni f>x ulti tu nniltis 
A it ii ix I sliihnit i/rnthtM h<>x]>itiinn. 
// /< << niiiiiiii lutn llhi, Ntinul Html, AY (.s//<o 
uti nt uii miiu triatior adoeniut." 


again, were, " O Jesus, have mercy ; Lord, deliver me ; Lord, 
make an end ; Lord, have mercy upon me ! " l 

In his will, dated Feb. 12, 1530, he left his valuables to 
Froben, Rheiianus, and other friends, and the rest to the aged 
and poor and for the education of young men of promise. 2 
The funeral was attended by distinguished men of both 
parties. He lies buried in the Protestant cathedral of Basel, 
where his memory is cherished. 

Erasmus was of small stature, but well formed. lie had 
a delicate constitution, an irritable temperament, fair skin, 
blonde hair, wrinkled forehead, blue eyes, and pleasant voice. 
His face had an expression of thoughtfulness and quiet stu- 
diousness. 3 In his behavior he combined dignity and grace. 
u llis manners and conversation, 1 says Beatus Rheiianus, 
" were polished, affable, and even charming." 

He talked and wrote in Latin, the universal language of 
scholars in mediaeval Europe. He handled it as a living lan 
guage, with ease, elegance, and effect, though not with classi 
cal correctness. His style was Ciceronian, but modified by the 
ecclesiastical vocabulary of Jerome. In his dialogue " Cicero- 
niamiis," or on the best mode of speaking (1528), lie ridicules 
those pedantic semi-pagans, chietly Italians, who worshiped 
and aped Cicero, and avoided Christian themes, or borrowed 
names and titles from heathen mythology. He had, however, 
the greatest respect for Cicero, and hoped that "lie is now 
living peacefully in heaven." He learned neither German nor 
English nor Italian, and had only an imperfect knowledge of 
French, and even of his native Dutch. 

1 "O Jesn, nriscricnriUct ; Doininc, liber a mr ; Domine, fac finem ; T)n- 
miM, iniKcrfrc mci ; " and in German or Dutch, Lieber God (Gott) ! Deatus 
Ithenanus, in Vita Er. 

- Dnimnumd, II. :->: ,S-340, gives the document in full. 

3 ,See the interesting description of his face by Lavater in his Phi/sior/- 
noiiiik, quoted by Ad. Miiller. p. 10S, and Ilagenbaeh, A . Gexc//., III. 00. 
There are several portraits of him, by Matsys (1517), Diircr (102o), and, the 
best, by Holbein who painted him repeatedly at Basel. 

71. ERASMUS. 411 

lit- luul a nervous sensibility. The least draught made him 
feverish. I It* could not bear the iron stoves of Germany, and 
required an open fireplace. He could drink no wine but 
Burgundy. He abhorred intemperance. He could not eat 
ii>h on last davs; the mere smell of it made him sick: his 
heart, he said, was Catholic, but his stomach Lutheran. He 
never used spectacles either by day or by candle-light, ami 
many wondered that study had not blinded his eyes. lie 
walked Jinn and erect without a cane. His favorite exercise 
was horseback-riding. 1 lie usually traveled on horseback with 
an attendant, and carried his necessaries, including a shirt, 
a linen nightcap, and a prayer-book, in a knapsack tied to the 
saddle. lie shrank from the mere mention of death, and 
frankly confessed that he was not born to be a martyr, but 
would in the hour of trial be tempted to follow St. Peter. 
He was fond of children, and charitable to the poor. 

///* Theological Opinions. 

Erasmus was, like most of the German and English human 
ists, a sincere and enlightened believer in Christianity, and dif 
fered in this respect from the frivolous and infidel humanists 
of France and Italy. When charged by Prince Albertus 
Pius of Carpi, who was in high favor at the papal court, with 
turning sacred things into ridicule, he answered, " You will 
much more readily find scoffers at sacred things in Italy 
among men of voiir own rank, ay, and in your much-lauded 
Rome, than with us. /could not endure to sit down at table 
with such men/ He devoted his brilliant genius and classi- 

1 In thankini; Archbishop Warham of Canterbury for the present of a 
horse. In- thus humorously describes the animal: " I have received the horse, 
which is no beauty, hut a ^ood creature notwithstanding; for he is free from 
all the mortal sins, except jjlutlony and laziness; and he is adorned with all 
the virtues of a ;ood confessor, beini; pious, prudent, humble, modest, sober, 
chaste, and <|iiiet. and neither bites n<>r kicks." To 1 olydore Virgil, who 
sent him money to ////((// a horse, he replied, " I wish you could ijive me 
any thine to c<frf the rider." (" 1)> /<* / /"" AKKTUK > 7<<.s, utin<nn dun 

<i j lil.l AKKTl 1C t jUM. " Op. 111. 0. A.) 

412 TIIK GERMAN REFORMATION. A.I). 1517 To 1530. 

cal lore to the service of religion. He revered the IJihle as 
a divine revelation, and zealously promoted its study. lie 
anticipated Luther in the supreme estimate of the word of 
God as the true source of theology and piety. (Kcolampa- 
dius confessed that he learned from Erasmus "* nihil in sacris 
scripturix prater Christum qucerendum" 

He had a shar[> eye to the abuses of the Church, and endeav 
ored to reform them in a peaceful way. lie wished to lead 
theology back from the unfruitful speculations and frivolous 
subtleties of scholasticism to Scriptural simplicity, and to 
promote an inward, spiritual piety. He keenly ridiculed the 
foolish and frivolous discussions of the schoolmen about for 
malities and quiddities, and such questions as whether God 
could have assumed the form of a woman, or an ass, or a cu 
cumber, or a (lint-stone ; whether the Virgin Mary was learned 
in the languages; and whether we would eat and drink after 
the resurrection. He exposed the vices and follies, the igno 
rance and superstition, of the monks and clergy. He did not 
spare even the papacy. u I have no desire," he wrote in 1523, 
that the primacy of the Roman See should be abolished, but 
1 could wish that its discipline were such as to favor every 
effort to promote the religion of the gospel; for several ages 
past it has by its example openly taught things that are 
plainly averse to the doctrines of Christ." 

At the same time he lacked a deeper insight into the doc 
trines of sin and grace, and failed to find a positive remedy 
for the evils he complained of. In using the dangerous 
I lower of ridicule and satire which he shared with Lucian, 
he sometimes came near the line of profanity. Moreover, he 
had a decidedly skeptical vein, and in the present century 
lie would probably be a moderate Rationalist. 

With his critical faculty he saw the difficulties and differ 
ences in the human surroundings and circumstances of the 
Divine Scriptures. He omitted in his Greek Testament the 
forgery of the three witnesses, 1 John 5: 7, and only inserted 

71. KHASMt S. 413 

it under protest in tin- third edition (1~>22). because lir had 
rashlv promised to do so if a single (Jreek MS. could In- found 
to contain it. 1 lie doubted the genuineness of the pcricope 
of tin- adulteress (John S:l-ll), though lie retained it in 
the text. He disputed the orthodox punctuation of Rom. 
: .">. He rejected the Pauline origin of Hebrews, and <[ties- 
tioned the .lohaniiean authorship of the Apocalypse. He 
judged Mark to he an abridgment of Matthew. He admitted 
lapses of memory and errors of judgment in the Apostles. 
He denied any other punishment in hell except "the perpet 
ual anguish of mind which accompanies habitual sin." As 
to the Lord s Supper, lie said, when asked his opinion by the 
magistrate of Ilasel about the book of CEcolampadius and 
his ligurative interpretation, 2 that it was learned, eloquent, 
well written, and pious, but contrary to the general belief of 
the church from which it was dangerous to depart. There. 
is good reason to believe that he doubted transubstantiation. 
He was also suspected of leaning to Arianism, because he 
summed up the teaching of Scripture on the Trinity in this 
sentence: "The Father is very frequently called (iod, the 
Son sometimes, the I loly Spirit never ; " and he adds : * Many 
of the lathers who worshiped the Son with the greatest piety, 
yet scrupled to use the word homoomion, which is nowhere 
to be found in Holy Scripture." 3 He moderated the doe- 
trine of hereditary sin, and defended human freedom in his 
notes on Romans. lie emphasized the moral, and depreciated 
the doctrinal, element in Christianity. lie deemed the Apos- 

1 ..." HP cut Kit finsn Cdhniniiitii Ji. Tninrtxi simpicor codirrm ilium 
ml )/o.s//-o.s f.v.s-- run-retain." ()jn-r<i, VI. IUSK. The Codex Montfortianns, 
no\v in Dtihlin. \va probably written between l. l .t-l. L -j, and the disputed 
passage interpolated with tin- purpose of injtirin-4 tin